It’s not the vagina ring you’re used to seeing advertised.
American women are bombarded with ads for the NuvaRing contraceptive, a little flexible ring that’s inserted in the vagina to gradually release hormones instead of popping a daily pill or inserting a more complicated IUD that comes with a host of other risks including heavy bleeding and even pregnancy. It’s convenient, discreet, and now that technology is being translated to other forms of women’s health protection.
A new silicone vagina ring is being tested in Malawi as a means to actually fight HIV infection rates, and stave off infections from cheating partners. It’s especially helpful for women who have sexual encounters with men who refuse to wear condoms. The vagina ring itself goes undetected by the male partner, and gradually secrets an antiviral drug that works against the HIV virus being contracted. It’s essentially similar to the NuvaRing, but instead of hormones the silicone protection device combat viruses.
Each vagina ring is effective for roughly one month like its contraceptive counterpart, and those who use it had been reported as 92% less likely to contract HIV versus those who have sex entirely unprotected. In a country where nearly 10% of the population has HIV, this is a major breakthrough in healthcare and women’s rights.
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