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February 23, 2019

Can We Use Expired Condoms?

Hi Valentine,

I am very excited.  After almost two years without sex I am dating someone I really like and we are having a lot of fun in bed and running through a lot of condoms.  The other day I found an old packet but they expired in 2012.  Can we use them?  Is it safe?


Well first of Emily, congratulations on your new man and the end of your sex drought.  I am also really glad to hear that you are having a lot of safe fun.  You go girl!

Now about the condoms:  they are made of latex and then lubricated with either spermicide or a water based lubricant.  The latex itself retains its integrity for about six years, which means that when the condom company says that ‘condoms are 97 per cent effective if used correctly’, that statement is true for six years.  As the lubricant dries off and the latex ages, the condom becomes more brittle and susceptible to tearing.  This means it is more likely to break and ruin all that sexy fun that you and your man are having.

Emily, why bother with the expired ones?  When you consider what condoms keep us safe from, is it really worth the risk?  You are obviously not a sexually irresponsible woman, in fact it sounds like you pick your partners with great care, why not pick your condoms with the same great care?  I wouldn’t bother with the expired condom, in fact throw them out.


Valentine, I keep getting urinary tract infections.  My boyfriend lives far and when he visits, after we have sex, I get these infections.  Is he cheating?


I am so sorry Njoki. Few years ago a friend called me at 4 a.m. to take her to the hospital and she had one of those. She was bent over in pain so I really sympathize with you.

The good news is that a UTI is not proof that your man is cheating on you.  In fact the bacteria that caused the infection probably came from your own body.  The tube that carries urine out of our bladders and out into the toilet is called the urethra and women have a shorter one than men.  Between our legs, we have 3 openings that lead to very different environments – the urethra where we pee from; the vagina which is our happy place and finally our anus where the poop comes from.  During sex, fluids can move into the urethra and carry bacteria that that environment is not used to resulting in a UTI.  What you can do to clean this area is take a pee right after sex as this will clear out the area and the urine will carry any foreign matter out with it.

When you do get a UTI make sure that you get it treated as quick as possible because you do not want it to move up to your kidneys.  That is what had my friend in excruciating pain.  Also drink a lot of water so that your urinary tract is forced to flush out several times.

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