You may hear some guys complain that wearing a condom reduces pleasure or that putting on a condom ruins the mood.
Even if this was true – and it’s not – you have a responsibility to protect your own health and your partner’s health because decisions like whether to use a condom will affect both of you. If you’re having sex, that means having sex safely.
Having sex safely or practicing safe sex means you are taking all the necessary measures to prevent transmitting STDs and, if you’re a female-male couple, unplanned pregnancies. It doesn’t matter what kind of relationship you have – straight or gay, long-term and committed or just a “hook up” – safe sex puts you in control.
While abstinence is the only 100% effective way to prevent pregnancy and STDs, safe sex makes all sex – from making out to sexual intercourse – significantly safer.
For sex to be considered safe sex, you must:
- Use latex condoms from start to finish during oral, vaginal, anal sex. Many guys find that condoms can actually make sex more pleasurable. Click here to get the low down.
- Get tested regularly for STDs and STIs. Because condoms alone will not stop the spread of certain STDs and STIs, it is important you know whether you have STDs or STIs and, if you test positive, get treatment and follow a doctor’s advice. Click here to find out how you can get tested.
If you take both of these precautions, you are practicing safe sex. You’re in control. If you’re not taking both these precautions, you risk pregnancy and transmitting STDs.
Important disclaimer: Using latex condoms and getting tested cannot be substituted for other methods. Lambskin condoms are less effective at preventing the transmission of STDs and women’s hormonal contraception like “the pill” and “the patch” do not prevent the transmission of STDs at all.
Remember, having sex won’t make you any more of a man. But if you are having sex, taking control of your own and your partner’s health by having sex safely will. With free condoms and STD testing at many of Pennsylvania’s Reproductive Health Centers, practicing safe sex is a cinch. Take control of your health and plan a visit today.