It’s no secret that looking after your sexual health is essential – but are you doing everything you can to take care of this aspect of your personal wellbeing? In this blog, we take at a look at three simple ways you can make sure your sexual health stays in tiptop condition.
- Understand your contraception options
Being clued up on your contraception options and practising safe sex is an important part of looking after your sexual health. In fact, there are over 10 different types for you to choose from, so you shouldn’t struggle to find a method that suits you and your partner. However, it’s also important to understand how these methods work and how you need to use them in order for them to be as effective as possible.
For example, condoms are an option for both men and women. This barrier method of contraception is currently the only type of birth control that can prevent both pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). So, even if you or your partner use another method of contraception, it’s important to be aware that you could be at risk of developing one of these infections.
For more information about your contraception options, you could speak to your doctor. Alternatively, you could carry out your own research online and visit reputable websites such as LloydsPharmacy Online Doctor.
- Get yourself tested
If you have unprotected sex, there is a chance you may contract an STI. If left untreated, these infections can be bad news for your wellbeing, leading to more serious health problems such as infertility. Unfortunately, some STIs don’t always carry symptoms, meaning you could be infected but not be aware of it. So, if you’ve had unprotected sex and you’re worried that you may have caught an infection, you should get yourself tested.
You can get tested at a number of different places, such as your GP surgery or local sexual health or genitourinary medicine clinic. You could even purchase a home testing kit online, eliminating the need to visit a clinic in person.
Generally speaking, getting tested is quick, easy and painless. The test itself will depend on what it is that you’re being checked for. For example, you may be required to provide a urine or blood sample, or you may need a physical examination or have a swab taken. If you discover that you have an STI, you will be offered a suitable treatment. Most infections can be treated with a short course of antibiotics.
- Don’t ignore problems
Aside from practising safe sex and being aware of STIs, it’s also important that you don’t ignore any problems that you may be having between the sheets. If you’re struggling to perform in the bedroom, it could indicate that something else is wrong. So, even if you’re embarrassed, it’s vital that you acknowledge and tackle these issues head on.
For instance, erectile dysfunction (ED) is a common problem among men. This refers to the inability to get or maintain an erection, and while it can be extremely distressing to experience, it could be the sign of a much more serious health problem, such as diabetes or heart disease. It can be easy to ignore ED in the hope that it will go away by itself. However, burying your head in the sand could be putting your wellbeing at risk.
Instead of disregarding this issue, you should speak to your doctor. Usually, ED is treated by tackling the root of the problem first, such as by losing weight or making some lifestyle changes. Alternatively, your doctor may suggest you try using a targeted treatment.
Your sexual health is your responsibility, and it pays to know how to look after this area of your wellbeing.