Safer sex 101

This article is besides available in : português, español What is “ safer arouse ” ? We often hear about tips and strategies for having ‘ condom ’ sex, but the world is that having sex at all means there ’ s a risk of getting Sexually Transmitted Infections ( STIs ). We don ’ triiodothyronine diffident from the facts ! thankfully, there are many ways to reduce your risk–that ’ s what we call having safer sex .

How do I have safer sex?

Safer sex is a way to reduce the risks of STIs, while still having arouse. It ’ s not hard, but it ’ s important to keep these strategies in mind and be cautious, flush when you ’ ra getting caught up in the moment. If you want to reduce your risks of catching or passing on an STI equally much as possible, all three of these safer sex components are critical :

Reading: Safer sex 101

  1. Correct, coherent ( always, not equitable some of the meter ) manipulation of barriers ( condoms and early barriers, like dental dams ) on body parts or toys for any kind of vaginal, anal, or oral sex
  2. Being capable and communicating with your spouse about who you are having sex with
  3. regular testing for all STIs, by you and your collaborator ( second )

How are STIs transmitted?

Different types of sexual activities can put you at hazard for different STIs. When anticipating unlike encounters you may have with people and how you want to keep yourself safe, it ’ randomness helpful to know what precisely you ’ re being timid about. The matter is, STIs are transferred through more than just semen. They can besides travel through vaginal fluids, direct mucous membranes ( your skin ), blood, saliva, and feces ( 1 ). ultimately, it ‘s hard to know precisely which sex act is responsible for disease infection, since people often engage in more than one type of intimate activity ( like having both oral sex and penis-in-vagina arouse during the like seance ). With that in mind, it ’ sulfur best to practice safer arouse no matter what. here ‘s a list that can help you figure out which STIs you might be at gamble for during different sexual activities ( 2, 3 ) :

  • Kissing: Oral herpes ( HSV-1 )
  • Oral sex: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, HPV, herpes ( HSV-1 and HSV-2 ), syphilis, HIV, trichomoniasis, Giardia, Shigella, Salmonella, Campylobacter, and E. coli ( 4 )
  • Fingering and fisting (anal and vaginal): HIV, hepatitis B and C
  • Penis-in-vagina sex: HIV, gonorrhea, chlamydia, herpes, HPV, syphilis, chancroid, hepatitis B and C, trichomoniasis, genital warts
  • Anal sex : HIV, hepatitis B and C, HPV, syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, herpes, genital warts
  • Sex toys : not much research has been dedicated to STI infection via sex toys. It is possible that STIs transmittance can occur from genital fluids on the sex toy .
  • Vulva-to-vulva sex (scissoring): HPV, HSV-1, HSV-2, syphilis, chancroid, chlamydia, gonorrhea, genital warts, HIV

How to prevent STIs

As we said above, having sex at all introduces gamble of STIs.

It might sound black, but there are lots of ways you can be sexual and stay dependable ! Solo masturbation, dry-humping ( rubbing genitals with clothes on ), sexy lecture, massage ( without touching genitals ) and cuddling are some of the things that you can do that won ’ t spread STIs. And if you do choose to engage in intimate bodily process, there are a few things you can do to reduce your risk .

1. Get vaccinated 

Human papillomavirus ( HPV ), the most park STI in the USA, can have long-run consequences, like genital warts and cancers of the neck, penis, and throat ( 5, 6 ). But the HPV vaccine can protect against the HPV virus. everyday vaccinations are offered to children around ages 11 and 12, and booster shots are available for people up to age 26, or some adults ages 27 to 45 who are not adequately vaccinated ( 7 ). If you ’ ve already had sexual activity, do n’t worry ! You can hush get the vaccine ( 7 ) .

2. Use barrier methods

Barrier methods like external condoms, internal condoms, gloves, or alveolar consonant dams are protective during any type of sexual bodily process. They do what their name suggests—they create a barrier between your genitals/mouth/anus and your partner ’ mho genitals/mouth/anus. Keep in mind that these types of barriers reduce the risk of STI transmission during sexual activity, but they don ’ thymine fully eliminate the risk raw. The best way to be protected is to always systematically and correctly use a barrier method acting during every sexual activity act ( 2 ). External ( male ) condoms are a cheap, promptly available ( in many countries ), and easy to use barrier method if you are having vaginal/oral/ anal sex with a person with a penis. If you are having sex with a partner and are using sex toys ( like vibrators, dildo, or anal inserts ), an external condom should besides be used over the sex miniature to prevent the transmission of STIs between partners ( 2 ). Latex external condoms are the most normally researched and available methods for preventing STIs. If you or your collaborator have an allergy to latex, satisfactory alternatives are promptly available, though some data suggests non-latex condoms may break more easily ( 8, 9 ). When it comes to condom efficacy, HIV is the most study STI. Research suggests that condoms prevent HIV infection during penis-in-vagina sexual activity by 70 to 95 % of the time ( 10-13 ). Although less study, consistent and discipline condom use is besides effective in reducing the spread of other STIs that are spread through genital secretions, like chlamydia, gonorrhea, and trichomoniasis ( 2 ). STIs that are spread through aim skin-to-skin contact, like genital herpes or genital ulcer diseases may not offer as much protection as a condom, as if the infect skin is exposed, then the condom can only offer limited protection ( 2 ). To protect yourself during oral sexual activity, use a dam, or a condom cut lengthwise to cover the vulva and/or anus. During oral arouse on the vulva ( cunnilingus ) or anus ( anilingus ), infections—including HIV, syphilis, herpes, gonorrhea, HPV, trichomoniasis, and chlamydia —can be passed from mouth to genitals, or vice versa ( 14 ). To prevent STI transmittance during touching, you can use latex or nitrile gloves. If you ’ ra touching your partner ’ south genitals, or they are touching yours, then there is a hazard of transmitting some STIs ( such as HPV, genital warts, chlamydia, herpes simplex virus ( HSV ) 1 and/or 2, syphilis ). Infection risks increase when more fingers or a whole hand are inside the vagina or anus ( sometimes called fisting ), as this can cause small tears or injury, which can increase STI infection ( 14 ) .

3. Get tested for STIs

Whether it ‘s a casual or serious relationship, it ’ sulfur significant to discuss your intimate health history with your collaborator, and ask them about theirs .

This gives both of you the prospect to make an inform decision about what types of sex you want to have and what safer sex precautions you want to take .

This can feel like an awkward conversation at beginning, but you ’ ll get better at it with time. Plus, your partner ’ south reaction to discussing this subjugate will help you get to know them better. If they are very against getting tested, and talking about safer sex, this might affect your decision about having sexual activity with them. They could besides be wholly open and excited that you initiated an honest conversation ! When it comes to having safer sex, it ’ sulfur important to look out for your health and wellbeing.

Safer sex is the best option if you want to have sex and also be protected against STIs, but it ‘s up to each of us to decide what we want, and what horizontal surface of risk we and our partners are comfortable with. Track your sex life in Clue . Article in the first place published 04 July 2018 .

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