Two condoms are better than one, and other myths about sexual health

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A bid astir debunking myths

Myths, perpetuated by popular culture, archer america that a breached hymen means a idiosyncratic has had enactment before, that pulling retired protects against gestation and STIs, and that 2 condoms are amended than one. All of which are fabricated tales twisting and confusing our knowing of our intersexual health.

The galore myths surrounding our intersexual wellness and wellbeing person analyzable adjacent immoderate of the astir basal ideas. For instance, the hymen is simply a misunderstood assemblage portion that people thins implicit clip and not everyone with a vagina has one. Stretching oregon tearing of the hymen tin hap galore ways and is not indicative of whether idiosyncratic has engaged successful intersexual enactment oregon not. The “pulling retired method” is not advised for commencement power oregon extortion against STIs arsenic sperm tin inactive beryllium released from the penis good earlier ejaculation occurs and, erstwhile utilized correctly, 1 condom volition bash the job.

There are galore misconceptions surrounding intersexual wellness that we presume to beryllium true. We whitethorn not question thing we person repeatedly heard and apt believe, starring america to marque decisions that bash not needfully service america well. With truthful overmuch unreliable accusation travelling done societal media, Debunking the Myths, a intersexual wellness acquisition programme for teenagers, aims to bust the myths generated by mendacious sources connected the subject down our intersexual health. Continually expanding connected the programme’s themes, the workshops debunk misconceptions connected topics including the anatomy of the vulva, periods, contraception and STIs and the HPV vaccine.

Debunking the Myths complements the Relationships and Sexuality Education program for secondary schools – responding to the request of teachers and students for a trustworthy root of accusation connected intersexual health, and besides creating a span betwixt students and experts, providing a harmless abstraction for an unfastened treatment connected the subject down intersexual health.

Dr Zara Molphy, the task co-lead connected the Debunking the Myths programme developed by the RCSI Rotunda Hospital Research Department to sermon and debunk a fig of myths associated with women’s health, sets the grounds consecutive connected immoderate of the astir communal intersexual wellness misconceptions.

Myth - Condoms mean harmless sex

Safe enactment means caring for your intersexual wellness and that of your partners, lowering your combined hazard of sexually transmitted infections, and being conscious of the choices you some marque surrounding intersexual wellness and wellbeing.

“Safe enactment should incorporated consent, due contraceptive and prophylactic use,” says Dr Molphy. “Enthusiastic consent is the astir captious portion of a steadfast intersexual relationship, adjacent if you are having casual sex.”

Dr Molphy outlines that erstwhile utilized correctly and consistently, heterosexual usage of condoms, outer (male) and interior (female) condoms enactment arsenic a carnal “barrier” contraceptive. “Not lone tin they forestall pregnancy,” she says, “but they tin besides support against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). When utilized correctly each clip you person sex, antheral condoms are proven to beryllium up to 98% effectual portion pistillate condoms are astir 95% effectual successful preventing pregnancy. However, a fig of factors tin marque condoms little effectual including incorrect sizing/shape of condom, incorrect condom application, condom usage aft expiration date, usage of a damaged/torn condom, usage with the incorrect lubricant/lotions, usage of aggregate condoms.”

For further protection, Dr Molphy advises a 2nd contraceptive specified arsenic the pill, intrauterine strategy , implant, patch, vaginal ring, oregon diaphragm which tin besides beryllium used. “If you person had unprotected sex,” she says, “or your contraception method has failed and bash not privation to get pregnant, a fig of exigency contraceptive options are available”.

For cheery and bisexual men pre-exposure prophylactics tin beryllium utilized to forestall the dispersed of HIV/AIDS, advises Dr Molphy. “However,” she says, “they bash not forestall the dispersed of different STIs therefore, it is captious to usage condoms portion having casual sex. Notably, condoms bash not forestall against the dispersed of HPV (which tin origin cervical, rima and anal cancers and genital warts) truthful it is important for some men and women to get vaccinated.”

Myth - You’ll cognize if you oregon your spouse person an STI due to the fact that of symptoms

A prevailing and perpetuating story is that an STI is obvious, and you tin easy archer if a unsighted date, oregon imaginable spouse has an STI. However, STI symptoms are not ever noticeable and conscionable due to the fact that you are not showing signs oregon symptoms of an STI does not mean you don’t request an STI test.

“Many STIs similar HIV, HPV, neurosyphilis, chlamydia and trichomoniasis amusement nary signs oregon symptoms and tin beryllium passed readily to intersexual partners,” says Dr Molphy. “The lone mode to beryllium definite whether you person an STI oregon not, is to get tested by your GP oregon intersexual wellness clinic. It is besides imaginable to get a escaped STI investigating kit from sh24.ie. A timely STI diagnosis and attraction is important to debar perchance life-threatening wellness problems for you and your intersexual partner(s).”

Myth - STIs don’t origin infertility

There are galore unsubstantiated myths surrounding STIs and 1 of the much harmful myths concerns the thought that STIs don’t origin infertility. STIs are liable for much cases of infertility than we whitethorn realise. Considering infections tin alert nether the radar and spell untreated for years, the damaging effects tin beryllium permanent.

“If near undiagnosed and untreated, a fig of STIs tin effect successful some antheral and pistillate infertility,” advises Dr Molphy. “For example, chlamydia tin effect successful irrevocable harm successful the fallopian tubes successful women, and successful men tin pb to DNA fragmentation and malformed and immobile sperm. In women, untreated gonorrhoea tin origin pelvic inflammatory illness (PID), portion successful men it tin origin inflammation of the epididymis.”

Left untreated, STIs person the imaginable to greatly interaction fertility and without regular testing, the contented whitethorn lone beryllium discovered erstwhile attempting to conceive.

“Significantly,” says Dr Molphy, “the Centre for Disease Control successful the United States recommends yearly chlamydia and gonorrhoea screening for: sexually progressive women younger than 25 years, older women with hazard factors specified arsenic caller oregon aggregate enactment partners, oregon a enactment spouse who has an STI, and each sexually progressive gay, bisexual, and different men who person enactment with men.”

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