What you can expect

By Mayo Clinic Staff

To use a cervical cap:

  • Check the position of your cervix before inserting the cervical cap. To find your cervix, insert your finger deep into your vagina. The cervix feels like the tip of your nose. Its position will vary according to the time of the month and your body position.
  • Apply spermicide. Fill the cervical cap's bowl with about 1/4 teaspoon (1.25 milliliters) of spermicide. Spread a thin layer of spermicide on the brim of the cervical cap that faces the cervix. Place 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 milliliters) of spermicide in the groove between the rim and the dome of the cervical cap.
  • Insert the cervical cap. Insert the cervical cap into your vagina before sexual arousal to ensure proper placement. Find a comfortable position, such as squatting. Separate your labia with one hand. With the other hand, hold the cervical cap with the bowl facing upward and squeeze the rim of the cervical cap between your thumb and index finger. Slide the cervical cap into your vagina — making sure the taller brim of the cervical cap enters your vagina first. Push the cervical cap along the rear wall of your vagina as far as it will go. Use your finger to locate your cervix and press the rim of the cervical cap around the cervix until you've completely covered it.
  • Always check the cervical cap's position before sex. Squat, bear down, insert your finger into your vagina and press upward on the dome to make sure your cervix is covered. If the cervical cap is not covering your cervix completely, either push it onto the cervix or remove it and reinsert it.
  • Gently remove the cervical cap. After sex, leave the cervical cap in place for at least six hours and up to two days. To remove the cervical cap, squat, bear down and rotate the cap. Relax your muscles and push up on the dome of the cervical cap to break the seal. Grasp the removal strap and gently pull. Be careful not to scratch your vagina. After removal, wash the cervical cap with mild soap and warm water and let it air dry. Store the cervical cap in its provided container.
Jan. 21, 2012