To most people, sex is an enjoyable and fulfilling occupation, but as with most other things, having sex comes with its own risks, not the least among them is the STDs or Sexually Transmitted Diseases, also referred to as STIs or Sexually Transmitted Infections. Contacting STDs can land you in a variety of troubles and some form of STD can even be fatal. This is why it is of utmost importance that you observe proper precautions while having sex and do everything in your power to avoid STDs. Below are the five best methods on how to avoid STDs.
1. Engage in Safe Sex
This will always be the single most important thing when one is looking to avoid any and all negative and unwanted effects from the act of engaging in sex. And the crucial thing about safer sex is being consistent about it. No matter what kind of sex you are involving in with your partner, make sure you are using the appropriate barriers (condom, gloves, female condom and others) and that you do this every single time you make sex with your partner(s).
If you’re having vaginal or anal intercourse with your partner, never ever have sex without a condom. It is also advisable to use appropriate barriers when engaging in oral sex. Some effective barriers related to oral sex include condoms, dental dams, etc. This is even more necessary if one or both partners are found to be at high risk of STIs/STDs. As we may all know, barriers cannot provide 100% protection, but all the same, they do a pretty good job of greatly reducing the risk of contracting STDs.
2. Get Tested Regularly
This is another highly effective method to keep all kinds of STDs at bay. If you have an active sex life and with more than one partners, you must make sure to get yourself tested, and if needed, treated for STDs on a regular basis. Not only that, but you must also try your best to persuade your partners to do the same. This will greatly increase your (as well as your partners’) chances of leading a healthy and risk-free sex life.
Also, if it is found that you are at high risk of STD, you need to get the tests done on a more frequent basis. If you are on treatment, you must absolutely stay away—no matter how great the temptation– from all sexual activities until when treatment is over.
3. Mutual monogamy
It goes without saying that this is the most foolproof method when it comes to avoiding STDs. If both you and your partner are tested for STDs and none of you carries any infection, then there could be no question of any transmission of disease. However, the ‘trust issue’ is a crucial factor here and this method works only when both of you have absolute trust in each other. Anything less, and we would suggest that you still engage in safer sex and use condoms and barriers even if you are in a monogamous relationship with your spouse or your long-time partner.
4. Transparent Communication
Honest and open communication with your partner about your sex lives goes a long way in reducing the risks of suffering from STDs. Whether it is a steady/long-time relationship or otherwise, both partners need to be honest and transparent about their respective sexual behavior. Both of you must and have a right to, know whether or not you are in an exclusive sexual relationship. Do not hide facts, do not try to please your partner by saying what he/she wants to hear but be open and communicative. If you are engaging in multiple sexual relationships, make him/her see your reasons for doing that. This, of course, is easier said than done but this is also something you must be prepared to do at all times if you want to avoid STDs.
5. Stay in Control
Sometimes, for all our good sense and precautions, the temptation may get the better of us. This is especially true when you are on alcohol or on some or other kind of recreational drug. But if you want to lead a healthy sexual life, it is important to keep yourself in check even if you do indulge occasionally on such substances. And for all that, if you still can’t, well…engage in safe sex! That is the least you can and must do.