THE BEST WAYS TO PRACTICE SAFE SEX

THE BEST WAYS TO PRACTICE SAFE SEX

Many believe having sex with a single partner with no sexually transmitted disease (STI) can be classified as safe sex, but that is far from the truth. In this article, we discuss safe sex: why you should prioritize safe sex for sexually active persons, and some guidelines for practicing safer sex.

WHAT IS SAFE SEX, AND WHY SHOULD YOU NEED TO EMBRACE IT 

Safe sex and birth control are often used interchangeably, but these terms serve different purposes. Safe sex or protected sex is the sexual activity in which people take precautions to protect themselves against Sexually transmitted diseases while birth control, also called contraception or fertility control, is used to prevent unwanted pregnancy. 

EXAMPLES OF SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES THAT CAN BE AVOIDED WITH SAFE SEX

  • Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
  • Gonorrhea
  • Chlamydia
  • Genital herpes
  • Syphilis
  • Trichomoniasis
  • Human papillomavirus
  • Hepatitis B

RELIABLE GUIDELINES FOR PRACTICING SAFE SEX 

1. ALWAYS USE A CONDOM

Condoms are great options when looking for ways to practice safer sex. They serve as barriers during vaginal, oral, and anal sex by preventing direct contact of skin and body fluids between partners. Condoms are highly effective in preventing unwanted pregnancies and avoiding STIs. 


There are two main types of condoms.

A. The Male Condom or External Condom

It is worn on the penis and comes in varieties of shapes, sizes, and flavors. Condoms are made of different materials, including latex, plastic, or lambskin. Latex condoms are the most effective type of condom against STDs, while Lambskin condoms are the least effective in preventing STDs. Consistent use of male latex condoms provides an estimated 98% protection against STDs and unwanted pregnancy.

 B. The Female Condom or Internal Condom

The female condom is a conical-shaped item inserted into the vagina or anus. It is not as affordable and reliable as the male condom, but still an option for practicing safe sex. 

 Condom use is the only trusted precaution that protects us from STDs like gonorrhea, chlamydia, and HIV. However, both the male condom and female condom do not provide absolute protection against STDs like herpes.

  1. GET CHECKED REGULARLY FOR STIs

Once sexually active, you should regularly get checked for STDs and STIs to protect your health. Here is the list of screening recommendations by the CDC and why you need to get tested for STDs. Generally, you should get tested at least once a year. But for those changing partners often, it is a good rule of thumb to get tested before each new partner or every three to six months. 

  1. LIMIT THE NUMBER OF SEXUAL PARTNERS

Having more than one sexual partner in any given period increases your risk of contracting STDs or STIs. Also, research has proven that having ten or more body counts increases your risk of a cancer diagnosis in your lifetime. 

  1. ENGAGE IN NON-PENETRATIVE SEXUAL ACTIVITIES

In a population with a high rate of STIs, sexual activities like kissing, cuddling, massaging, and mutual masturbation are safer options. 

  1. AVOID SEX UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL OR DRUGS

This will prevent you from making unwise decisions that will compromise your health. 

  1. GET VACCINATED AGAINST SOME STIs

Vaccination against some STIs like Hepatitis B and HPV is available

  1. COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR PARTNER

Effective communication between partners regarding information about sexual history and STI status helps prevent the transmission of STIs. 





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1 comment
  • The study you cite for limiting the amount of sexual partners clearly states that it does not prove causality. You should specify that having multiple partners AND not practicing safe sex is what results in negative outcomes. There is no need to reduce the amount of sexual partners a person has if they appropriately use your products every time.

    Anitra on

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