Sexually transmitted diseases are always a scary topic. But an idea presented by a pair of teenagers may be able to mitigate those fears: a condom that changes color when they come into contact with an STD.
Typically, there is no way for us to tell if our partner has an STD while having sex. We have to be tested to confirm it should we fear that we've contracted one (or once we've noticed how itchy manoy has been lately). This condom, while still in its conceptual stage, can change that.
The proposed product, called the "S.T. Eye" will have a layer coated with antibodies that would recognize the virus or bacteria. The condom detects the pathogens in both the wearer and the partner. Once it recognizes them, the antibodies react in a way that would change the condom's color—like a litmus test for your penis.
The color would vary depending on the kind of STD—syphilis, chlamydia, herpes, and genital warts—it detected. The condom would turn green for chlamydia, yellow for herpes, purple for human papillomavirus (genital warts), and blue for syphilis.
The idea comes from a trio of students from the Isaac Newton Academy in east London: Muaz Nawaz, 13, Daanyaal Ali, 14, and Chirag Shah, 14. In a CNN report, Shah was quoted, "This kind of inspired us to make a condom, as it could save hundreds of thousands of lives," referring to the sustained prevalence of STDs in the United Kingdom.
The Daily Mail also got to interview Ali who said that, “We created the S.T.EYE as a new way for STI detection to help the future of the next generation. We wanted to make something that made detecting harmful STIs safer than ever before, so that people can take immediate action in the privacy of their own homes without the often-scary procedures at the doctors.”
The concept won in the health category at the TeenTech awards in Europe, a competition which urges teenagers to channel their energies (and raging hormones) toward the field of science. For their efforts, the trio won £1,000 ($1,568), and their idea's exposure in international media entities like Buzzfeed, Forbes, and various newspapers.
Nawaz, Ali, and Shah have already been approached by a condom manufacturer for their idea but for now, it remains an idea—a good one at that. In the meantime, we'll have to settle with health centers for our STD detection needs.
In light of this possible innovation in the field of sexual health, we'd like you to ask yourself this question: Should the condom change in color in the middle of a hot, hot romp, will you be stopping?