The best way to avoid contracting an STD is to not have sex. However, this isn’t most people’s favorite choice. A lot of STDs show no signs or symptoms. Your next potential partner may not even be aware they are infected. You can sleep with someone with an STD and not contract it, but you should be taking the proper precautions when it comes to your sexual health.
If your sexual partner told you that they have an STI, you may be worried that you were exposed to the STI during sex. What are the next steps?
See a health care provider
If you have had penetrative or oral sex with someone who has an STI, be sure to see your health care provider as soon as possible. If your partners has tested positive, you also need to get tested. Depending on the STI they have been diagnosed with, you may be given medications to prevent the STI if you don’t have an infection but intend to continue sexual relations with the infected person.
Depending on the STI your partner has, they may be able to take medication to decrease the likelihood of transmission. It is extremely important to take all of the medication prescribed to make sure that the STI is treated properly. You should not have sex with someone taking this medication until they have completed treatment.
HIVPost Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP)
If your partner has HIV and you think you may have been exposed to the virus, there is a medication you must start within 72 hours to reduce your chances of contracting HIV. You should also consider PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) if you plan to continue sexual relations with an HIV-positive partner.
Remember, practicing safe sex is the best way to prevent contracting STDs.
- Use condoms. Every time. Condoms, female condoms, gloves, etc only work if you are consistent about it. If your sex life involves anal, oral or vaginal intercourse, decide you will never have sex without a condom.
- Get tested regularly. Encourage your partner to do the same. Be consistent about getting tested and treated. If you are being treated for an STD, do not have sex until you are done with treatment. Otherwise, you and your partner could pass the disease back and forth.
- Only have sex within a monogamous relationship. Know your partners sexual history and remain faithful to each other to reduce your chances of catching an infection.
- Talk to your partner. Be open with your partner about your sexual history. If you can’t talk to your partner about sex, you can’t talk to them about safer sex.
- Be comfortable with having sex. You never have to have sex. If you feel uncomfortable you can say no.
- Be responsible for your own protection. Part of making responsible sexual choices is being prepared.
If you are worried about contracting an STD from your partner, do your research and find out how to prevent transmission. Get testing with one of myLAB Box’s STD testing kits.
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