If you’re having sex, the best way to avoid STIs is to use a condom every time.
STIs are usually passed on by sex with an infected person, although some infections can be passed on in other ways as well. STIs can be caught during oral (licking, kissing or sucking someone’s genitals), vaginal or anal sex and some can also be passed through sexual touching and skin-to-skin contact
Even if you’re using other kinds of contraception to prevent pregnancy, like the pill, you should still use a condom as well.
Using a condom every time you have sex is the only way to protect yourself from STIs as well as pregnancy. A condom acts as a barrier and stops body fluids from mixing during vaginal, oral or anal sex. Always make sure the condom has a BSI kitemark or CE mark on the wrapper. That means they’ve been machine-tested to a really high standard.
Dental dams are small squares of latex which work well as a barrier during sex involving contact between the mouth and the vagina or mouth and the anus.
If you have any questions about using condoms or dental dams or want to get free condoms in Bristol, visit a Unity Sexual Health clinic. Your visit will be confidential. That means we won’t tell anyone about it.