LOBO de CRIN o BOROCHI (Chrysocyon brachyurus)

Cánido de las pampas. Los guaraníes lo llaman aguará guasú ("zorro grande")
Más información en español, inglés y alemán o ver foto o video

A MIS LECTORAS... y al resto

“Amigos lectores que leerán este libro blog, | despójense de toda pasión | y no se escandalicen al leerlo |
no contiene mal ni corrupción; | es verdad que no encontrarán nada de perfección |
salvo en materia de reír; |
mi corazón no puede elegir otro sujeto | a la vista de la pena que los mina y los consume. |
Vale mejor tratar de reír que derramar lágrimas, | porque la risa es lo propio y noble del alma. Sean felices!
--François Rabelais (circa 1534) [english]

martes, 14 de julio de 2009

History of Female Contraception

By Victoria Nottingham
In the past, a woman used birth control primarily to avoid pregnancy, especially if she already had many children. Before the advent of modern medicine, pregnancy was a dangerous business and many women died during or after childbirth. Much of the birth control methods that were developed were done so by trial and error, and the secrets that were discovered were quietly passed on from woman to woman.
Dances, Amulets, Rituals, and Myths

The earliest documented forms of birth control were dances, rituals, amulets, and myths. By the 2nd-century CE, Greek gynecologist Soranus knew that women were fertile during ovulation and promoted the rhythm method. (Unfortunately, he was incorrect in his assumption that ovulation occurred during menstruation, rather than prior to it.) He also recommended several, less scientific, ways to prevent conception: holding the breath and drawing the body back during sex so the sperm could not penetrate the mouth of the uterus; dislodging the sperm by jumping backwards seven times after intercourse; and sitting down on bent knees in order to provoke sneezing! Similarly, prostitutes in 1st-century BCE are said to have ground their pelvises in a manner that increased their partner's pleasure, with the assumption that the movement simultaneously diverted the sperm away from the womb.
Ancient Roman women wore a leather pouch containing a cat's liver on their left foot during sex to prevent conception. Another preventative was spitting in the mouth of a frog three times. European women were advised to turn the wheel of a grain mill backwards four times at midnight. Others thought that if they inserted a finger into the vagina and "swished it around" after intercourse, it would dislodge or confuse the sperm. Around the same time period, women in other parts of the world wore birth control necklaces or carried amulets to prevent pregnancy.
And in cultures where the moon was believed to be responsible for fertilizing crops, women slept out of the moonlight, so as not to be impregnated by moonbeams. In a similar vein, Papuan Islanders worried that homosexual males might become pregnant. To ensure that this did not occur, they held ceremonies during which they fed them limes to avoid conception.
A more reliable method used in ancient times was continuous breastfeeding, which can prevent ovulation, often until a child was three years old. And a guaranteed method of birth control? Abstinence. In the Middle Ages, some women in Catholic Europe opted for a life in the church. The decision was encouraged, in part, because the vocation meant that money would be given and/or left to the church, initially in the form of a dowry and later, if there was any, as an inheritance.
Spermicides, IUDs, Pessaries, and Douches
In the ancient medical manuscript the Ebers Papyrus (1550 BCE), women were advised to grind dates, acacia tree bark, and honey together into a paste and apply it with seed wool to the vulva. Modern science has shown that, since acacia ferments into lactic acid, a well-known spermicide, this method may have been effective. Other compounds that were smeared around the vagina included olive oil, pomegranate pulp, ginger, and tobacco juice.
Historians believe the Arabs invented intrauterine devices: they placed pebbles in the uteruses of their camels, so they would remain "unhindered" for long trips through the desert. In 1920, German gynecologist Grafenberg developed the first proper IUD for humans, using silkworm gut and silver wire coiled into a ring.
Pessaries (vaginal suppositories or diaphragms) have been recorded as early as 2nd-century BCE. Substances used include elephant or crocodile dung, leaves, and seaweed. Another so-called pessary, which was developed by a man, was a wooden block, similar in size and shape to a doorstop. This method was condemned in the 1930s as an instrument of torture. Other methods have included placing an apricot pit in the uterus, or a product consisting of cocoa butter, boric acid, and tannic acid.
Throughout history, women have also used objects such as sea sponges or soft wool as a sperm barrier, often in combination with lemon juice or vinegar as a spermicide. Half a lemon might be inserted into the vagina. Oriental women used oiled paper to "cap" the cervix, while European women used beeswax.
Soluble pessaries came into the market in the 1800s – these were quinine or cocoa butter tablets that were inserted into the vagina before intercourse. The first brand, Wife's Friend, was created by W.J. Rendell.
Douches have been used throughout history. Since at least the 1600s, French prostitutes used syringes to douche with an acidic liquid, which was thought to be more effective than water.Oral Contraceptives
Oral contraceptives have been available for more than 4,000 years. Women in ancient China drank mercury to prevent pregnancy. Later, women in India imbibed carrot seeds, and an aboriginal group in Eastern Canada drank a tea brewed with beaver testicles.
In Ancient Greece and Rome, the juice of the silphium plant was a popular and effective form of oral contraceptive, which women took once a month. Unfortunately, the siphium plant only grew in one place in Cyrene was extinct by the 1st century CE. In the 2nd century CE, Soranus advised women to drink the water that blacksmiths used to cool hot metals. Urine and animal parts and poisons such as mercury, arsenic, and strychnine were also used as oral contraceptives.
Despite continuous debate over the ethics of abortion, it has been practiced throughout the centuries.
Throughout history, midwives doubled as informal family planning counselors, who would help with childbirth as well as with unwanted births. Emmenagogues (which bring on a period) and abortifacients were known as "women's medicines," which were used like the modern morning after pill. In the early 1900s these products were advertised as "removing obstructions" and "preventing irregularities" in the menstrual cycle.
Much of the information that these "wise women" knew has been lost over time – the information was taboo by most religious standards, and history and medical books were written by men, who were not as interested in "women's problems." But because of this lost information about herbal contraceptives, modern accidents have happened. For instance, pregnant women drinking pennyroyal tea may unwittingly miscarry. In one of Aristophanes' Ancient Greek comedies, Hermes advises the hero to "add a dose of pennyroyal" to keep his mistress out of trouble. Other herbs that have been taken to prevent or abort pregnancy include willow leaves, colocynth, and yarrow.
Despite the great technological and medical advancements of the 21st century, looking back at the history of birth control, we still have to ask: How far have we come, really?
Also read History of Male Contraception and It's a Mad, Mad World .

No hay comentarios.: