Sex is no longer a topic that’s spoken about in hushed tones. It’s unfortunately lost it sacred and matrimonial value. So it didn’t really surprise me that three students came up with sexually transmitting disease detecting condoms. During the science contest, three teens won the Teen Tech award for coming up with condom that changes colour when it detects an STI.
The colour changing condom is the idea of Muaz Nawaz,13, Daanyaal Ali,14 and Chirag Shah also 14. The students decided to create a solution to a problem that most youth ,especially sexually active ones, in UK are dealing with. According to the World Health Organization, more than 1 million people acquire a sexually transmitted infection every day. The National Health Service in the United Kingdom says chlamydia is the most common STI and is easily passed on during sex.
The three students borrowed the concept from an HIV testing method called Elisa which utilises colour. Daanyaal explains, “Once the [bodily] fluids come into contact with the latex, if the person does have some sort of STI, it will cause a reaction through antibodies and antigens hanging on to each other, which triggers an antibody reaction causing a colour change.
The exact shade would depend on the STI, because reaction times vary. The condom could also have an intermediate layer that includes reactants to test for syphilis, chlamydia, herpes and genital warts . The colour change would work on both sides of the condom, with different colours for different STIs – green for chlamydia, purple for genital warts, blue for syphilis and yellow for herpes
This idea has gotten such good response that these young developers have been approached by a condom manufacturer that believes it can make their idea a reality. “We really want to make this a realistic thing, but we understand that it is not the easiest thing in the world to do,” Nawaz said.
They even won £1,000 for their school and are going to Buckingham Palace in October to meet the Duke of York.
The didn’t think that their invention would be taken seriously. In fact, one confesses, ”We never thought we would pitch it, we thought we would get in trouble. Even though it’s a serious topic, [we were worried] some people would think we were taking it as a joke.”
Experts say that it’s a possible solution but it may be expensive to produce and the chemicals necessary have to be non harmful to the genitals which is yet to be proven. It may also be tricky because people may be scared to use condoms because they’ll be caught red handed or worse, lose their partners over a condom detector. Well, everything has two sides.
Kudos to these amazingly brilliant kids for their admirable creation. Hopefully, it will grow to be something big someday. But I have a question, how are 14 year old thinking about STD’s?? LOL.