The following is the full Ask LSOP #9 question and answer, featured in the Little Shop of Pleasures November 2016 newsletter.
What makes a toy safe to use anally?
There are a few things to consider when determining if a toy is safe to be used anally.
First the shape. The muscles of the anus and rectum can pull objects into the body where they could become lost in the colon. This is not an emergency room trip you want to make. To prevent this from happening, use toys with a flared base or flange. Toys designed specifically for anal use will have a base designed to keep a portion of the toy outside the body so that it can be easily retrieved. Dildos or vibrators with testicles, or handles that are larger than the insertable portion of the toy will also work.
Secondly, it is important to ensure that the surface of the toy is smooth. Toys that are scratched or damaged, or toys that have raised seams or ridges can cause injury to the body, and in particular to the extra-delicate tissue of the rectum. Tears in the wall of the rectum aren't only painful, but also can be the cause of serious infections. If your toy isn't smooth, it isn't a safe anal toy.
Lastly, consider the material of the toy. If a toy is made from a porous material like PVC, TPE, or latex, it is important to cover the toy with a condom during anal use, as these materials are very difficult to sanitise, and could retain bacteria from the rectum after use, rendering them unsafe for future enjoyment. If your PVC, TPE, or latex toy is getting on in years, it's good practice to check the integrity of the material to make sure that it's not likely to break or rip during use, which could result in a part of the toy being lost inside the body. If your toy is a non-porous material, like silicone, stainless steel, or glass, they can be used without a condom, but will need to be sanitised after use to ensure that they are safe to use the next time. These materials can be cleaned with toy cleaner and water, and then sanitised by soaking in a 10% bleach solution or boiling.
So, if it's shaped in a way that will keep it from going missing, it's not sharp or rough, and you know that it's clean (and how to keep it clean for future uses), your toy should be safe to use anally.
-- The LSOP Experts
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