Your Doctor

10 Things You Need to do For Your Sexual Health


When you think about sexual health, you may just think about the possibility of sexually transmitted infections, but sex can have many effects on your health, which it’s important to be aware of. So to round off Sexual Health Week 2017, here are 10 things you should know about your sexual health. 

1. Premature ejaculation could be down to depression or anxiety. Equally it could signal a bigger problem like diabetes, heart disease or high blood pressure which is why it’s important to see your GP about the problem. 

2. There is a common misconception that if you take the birth control pill then you need to take a break every few years otherwise it becomes ineffective. This is not true, the birth control pill will always be as effective as the first day you started taking it. As long as you remember to take it!

3. There are over 10 methods of birth control. It’s important to visit your doctor or family planning clinic to discuss the different methods so you find the best method for you. 

4. The risk of getting an STI isn’t just a risk if you have had sexual intercourse but also if you have performed oral sex on your partner. Chlamydia, gonorrhoea and syphilis can all be spread through oral sex. So can potentially fatal conditions such as Hepatitis or AIDS

5. Women can be prone to urinary tract infections after having sex. Urinary tract infections can be very painful and affect your day-to-day life so to avoid getting one it’s important to make sure you’re hydrated and that you always go to the toilet as soon as you can after having sex. 

6. Women can get thrush for many reasons but a woman engaging in sexual intercourse when she is not ready is sometimes a factor in the development of thrush. Other common triggers include Anaemia, diabetes and use of antibiotics

7. If you want to have a baby, bear in mind that fertility rapidly decreases if you are not a healthy weight, a smoker, or if you drink more than 14 units a week. Living a healthy lifestyle is vital before and during pregnancy for both you and your partner.

8. Not all STI’s have obvious symptoms, which is why it is important to get tested regularly if you are having sex with more than one partner or a new partner

9. It is perfectly normal for a woman to get discharge if it is colourless or creamy and odourless. However, discharge can signal that something is wrong with your body if it is smelly or green and might mean that you’ve contracted an STI, or it could just be an infection like thrush, which is easily treated. Many discharges are unrelated to sexual activity.

10. A woman can get pregnant whilst breastfeeding even though breastfeeding may suppress or delay menstruation. Ovulation will occur before you start having periods again so use contraception. Your GP can guide you on the most suitable contraception during breast feeding.

Our friends at HANX Official offered up this final tip:

"Remember that barrier contraception, including male and female condoms, are the only contraceptive choices that protect against sexually transmitted infections, the most effective being the male condom. If you feel embarrassed to buy or carry condoms, ensure you visit your local sexual health clinic or explore brands such as HANX, that enable discreet purchasing and are changing the taboo around carrying condoms."