In anatomy, the diaphragm refers to a dome-shaped muscle that separates the chest cavity from the abdominal cavity and plays a crucial role in respiration. The diaphragm contracts and relaxes during breathing, helping to draw air into the lungs during inhalation and push air out during exhalation. The diaphragm also helps to maintain the pressure in the abdominal cavity, supporting the organs and preventing them from compressing the lungs. In addition to its role in breathing, the diaphragm is also involved in other physiological functions such as swallowing, vomiting, and coughing.
In contraception, a diaphragm is a barrier contraceptive device that is inserted into the vagina to cover the cervix and prevent sperm from reaching the uterus, thereby preventing pregnancy. Diaphragms are typically made of latex or silicone and must be fitted by a healthcare provider to ensure proper size and placement. They are used in combination with spermicide and require proper insertion and removal techniques for effective use. Diaphragms are a form of non-hormonal contraception and can be a choice for individuals who prefer a barrier method of birth control.
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