The Latin word diaphragma came to Latin as diaphragma, which in turn, in our language, led to diaphragm. The concept has different meanings according to the context.
Diaphragm is a membrane composed of muscle fibers that is responsible for separating the abdominal cavity from the chest cavity. This tissue is present in the body of all mammals.
The diaphragm is involved in breathing, both inhalation and exhalation. Breathing in causes the diaphragm to contract, which helps increase the space available in the chest cavity and allows air to enter the lungs. When exhaling, on the other hand, the relaxation of the diaphragm is generated and the air is expelled.
Lyric singing teachers teach their students to “control” the movement of the diaphragm to get the most out of the air. Lyrical singers, who approach repertoires such as chamber music or opera, must face considerable challenges at the vocal and respiratory levels, much higher than those that usually exist in a popular song. For example, long lines are common in which you “should not” interrupt to inspire, and for this it is necessary to optimize the breathing process.
The objective of this supposed control over the diaphragm, since in reality we cannot decide exactly its behavior but rather delay its relaxation, is to prevent air from escaping from the lungs when the body naturally requests it, in order to make the most of it.
The technique used by lyrical singers is very difficult to learn, mainly because they cannot see what is happening inside the body at every moment. Broadly speaking, it consists of breathing with the lower part of the lungs and doing certain abdominal movements to “hold” the diaphragm in its extended position and prevent it from relaxing naturally.
Other physiological activities, such as the excretion of urine and feces or vomiting, are also carried out with the participation of the diaphragm. See Abbreviation Finder for acronyms related to diaphragm.
In the field of optics and photography, a diaphragm is an element that gives the lens the ability to manage the amount of light entering a camera. The aperture of the diaphragm can therefore be adjusted so that the photosensitive medium receives more or less light.
Another use of the notion of a diaphragm is in contraception. It is a method created at the end of the 19th century, which consists of a flexible disc that is located in the cervix to prevent the entry of sperm.
A spermicide is added to diaphragms to increase their effectiveness. It is important to note that this device does not provide protection against sexually transmitted diseases. It also increases the risk of urinary tract infection.
The first step to take advantage of the diaphragm is to use it in each sexual relationship: it is enough to skip once to waste all the effort. This is essential from a statistical point of view, since the chances of pregnancy without any protection are much higher. But it is also necessary to take other precautions, such as placing it before the arousal begins and making sure that the man ejaculates outside the vagina.
It is said that when used correctly, its effectiveness can reach 94%, while the most common errors in its application reduce this value to 88%. In other words, we could say that twelve out of every hundred women who use this contraceptive method do not take advantage of it (either because they do not follow the instructions carefully or because they do not use it with every intercourse) and, therefore, they can get pregnant.