Did you know...
That 25% of first year students will catch an STI? It's a pretty scary statistic, but you don't have to be a part of this statistic if you educate yourself properly on how to keep yourself in good sexual health. (Credit: Fresh Social Hub)
Of course during your time at University you'll want to go out and have fun, but be careful not to leave your drink unattended. It's also not a good idea to drink so much that your judgement becomes impaired. A whopping 60% of women who contracted an STI at University said they were drunk at the time.
Presuming you're having sexual intercourse with someone you've just met, always use a condom (even if you're on the pill or implant contraceptive). According to a recent survey, 15% of under 25's have had unprotected sex with two or more partners. Condoms are often given out free at your Student Union or sexual health clinic, so there's no excuse to not keep yourself protected.
If you do have sex with someone unprotected, you need to go and get checked as soon as possible. You may think that you haven't contracted anything, but some STI's don't have any obvious symptoms. The most common STI is Chlamydia which doesn't have any at all. The only way you will know for sure is to get a test.
Chlamydia left untreated can lead to fertility issues in the future and not only poses a threat for your health, but also leaves you open to unknowingly passing it on to another sexual partner.
Other STI's such as herpes for example can be contracted through oral, anal or vaginal sex and have a variety of symptoms. Go to see your GP or local sexual health clinic if you notice:
- Tingling, burning or itching around your genitals
- Pain when you urinate
- Small blisters that burst to leave red, open sores around your genitals, anus, thighs or buttocks
Why should you go to a sexual health clinic?
Sexual health clinics treat problems with the genitals and urine system.
Many sexual health clinics offer a walk-in service, where you don't need an appointment. They'll often get test results quicker than GP practices and you don't have to pay a prescription fee for treatment. (Credit: NHS)
For more information on helpline contact details, sexual health FAQ's and much more take a look here
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