Ladies, oral sex can give you STIs. Here 5 ways to stay protected
By NCVC Staff | Published on Sep 26, 2023
Did you know that you can contract infections while engaging in oral sex? While using condoms for pregnancy and STI prevention is well-known, it’s essential to understand that infections can still be transmitted during oral sex. In this article, we will discuss the various infections you can catch and provide you with five effective ways to minimize your risk and stay protected.
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What are the STIs you can contract?
Oral sex can lead to several sexually transmitted infections, including chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis, HPV (human papillomavirus), and trichomoniasis.
Chlamydia: This infection may not exhibit visible symptoms initially, but it can cause white, green, or yellow vaginal discharge, bleeding between periods, vaginal itching, and a burning sensation while urinating. Chlamydia can also affect the throat if acquired through oral sex.
Gonorrhoea: Similar to chlamydia, gonorrhoea can cause white or yellow discharge, a burning sensation during urination, rectal pain, and a sore throat.
Syphilis: Although syphilis may not show specific symptoms, it can manifest as painless ulcers or sores on the lips, mouth, throat, or genitals. Additionally, rashes may appear on the mid-section, palms, and soles of the feet.
HPV or human papillomavirus: HPV can lead to various issues, including the formation of warts in the throat or genital area. In severe cases, it can result in changes in vocal cords, difficulty breathing, and potentially lead to cervical, vaginal, anal, penile, or neck cancer.
Trichomoniasis: Trichomoniasis can cause symptoms such as vaginal discharge, redness, itching, and a burning sensation during urination.
It’s important to note that although the risk is lower, it is still possible to contract HIV through oral sex.
Here’s how you can protect yourself from infections during oral sex
While some may suggest abstinence from all forms of sex, we understand it may not be feasible for everyone. Therefore, we have compiled five ways to help you engage in oral sex safely:
1. Using condoms even during oral sex
Don’t underestimate the importance of condoms. Request that your partner uses condoms during oral sex, as they provide crucial protection. Although it may seem inconvenient, the safety they offer is well worth it.
2. Pick the correct condom and use it correctly
According to the CDC, it is recommended to use non-lubricated latex condoms for oral sex protection. If you or your partner has latex allergies, opt for a polyurethane condom. Remember, using condoms correctly is as important as selecting the right one. Ensure the condom is not expired and put it on before any sexual activity, including oral sex.
3. Try a dental dam
If you are engaging in or receiving oral sex, consider using a dental dam. A dental dam is a thin square sheet that acts as a barrier between the mouth and genitals or anus.
4. Practice good oral hygiene
Maintaining good oral hygiene is crucial. Poor oral health, including tooth decay, gum disease, or bleeding gums, can increase the risk of STI transmission. Therefore, it is essential to brush and floss regularly to reduce these risks and keep yourself safe during oral sex.
5. Get yourself tested regularly
Even with multiple precautions, there is still a chance of infection. Therefore, it is important to get tested regularly if you are sexually active. Regular testing helps ensure early detection and prompt treatment if necessary.
By following these tips, you can enjoy oral sex without unnecessary worry. Remember, protecting yourself is a crucial element of sexual well-being. Stay informed, take the necessary precautions, and prioritize your safety.