All you need to know about “Safe Sex”

What is safe sex?

Safe sex is all about having fun sex without running the risk of acquiring Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs). This includes taking certain responsible measures before, during and after sex. Sounds complicated? Far from it! Safer Sex is all about: Being Informed; Communicating with Partners; Using Condoms/PrEP; and, Getting (HIV/STD) Tested whenever needed.

Being informed: What You need to Know What is an STD? What are the various types? How might I contract one? Which sexual activity puts me at risk of getting an STD? Symptoms? Preventive measures? Treatment? Knowledge is power. So, stay informed. That way, you’ll always make the right choices regarding your sexual activity and only turn your back on risky behaviour 😉

Communicating with partners Talk openly and frankly with your sexual partners about each other’s sexual interests, previous sexual partners, testing records and treatment for STDs. Honest is the new sexy!

  • Use Condoms with lubricants
  • Use condoms AND correctly: apply water-based lube, as it works better with a latex condom during anal or oral sex to prevent STDs and HIV. Also, using lubricant alone will not protect you from HIV or other STIs, so it is always important to use condoms as well. Most condom failures can be prevented by using condoms correctly and by using plenty of water-based lubricant.
  • Use PrEP
  • Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is a new HIV prevention method in which an HIV negative person takes a prescribed antiretroviral drug (ARV) daily.
  • Get Tested Whenever Relevant
  • Whenever you feel you have done something slightly risky, get tested.
      Sexual activity = higher risk of contracting STDs or HIV. Regular testing = early diagnosis/treatment of STDs or HIV. Early diagnosis/treatment = reduced health risks.

    Isn’t safer sex only for people who have ‘risky’ sex?

  • Safe sex is a must for anyone who is sexually active!
  • There are two types of sexual behaviours: RISKY and SAFE.
  • Risky or Unsafe
  • The following body fluids might contain disease-causing germs
    • Blood
    • Semen/Cum
    • Pre-seminal fluid/ Precum
    • Saliva
    • Discharge from sores/blisters
    • Sometimes shedding from skin without a visible sore or blister (in cases such as Herpes). Read more here.
    STDs (including HIV) can be transmitted anally, orally, or digitally if any of these germ-carrying body fluids come into contact with a nick in the skin or penis or lining of the anal canal. The risk of contracting an STD or HIV through such behaviour is higher. Please remember, ALL Sex is Risky. This is because any kind of sex will cause some minor, microscopic cuts, nicks and bleeders in the involved organs. Anal sex tops the list because the lining of the anus is very thin and it contains no natural lubrication. Anal Penetration can cause more damage and tearing to this thin lining – an open invitation to germs, infections, and virus.
    Being Safe means avoiding any contact of body fluids between partners (and thus preventing transmission of STDs or HIV). It is Easy and Pleasurable to practice, by using condoms, dental dams, gloves etc. Safe sexual behaviour also means avoiding sex altogether, if either you or your partner(s) have:
    • mouth sore or blister
    • bleeding gums
    • tooth infection
    • wound around your private parts
    • pus or discharge from a wound
    • cut in your finger (which might be used to pleasure your partner)
    Another way to keep HIV at bay is to get on PrEP. If there is anything on either of your bodies that looks abnormal or worrisome, don’t waste time. Go and get tested for STDs, both of you. Better safe than sorry. Always.

    What is a high-risk activity?

    Any sexual activity which could cause an exchange of body fluids is a high-risk activity. This means any sexual act that is performed without condom use is HIGH RISK. Does this means using a condom eliminates all risks? No!
    If the condom is worn incorrectly or reused, the risk remains high (without Lube, Condoms can tear allowing fluid exchange).

    Isn’t safe sex boring?

    Not at all! All types of fun, engaging sex can be Safe. By taking the recommended precautions, you can have all types of sex, with relative safety.