Sexual health and safety
Ysbrand Cosijn

Top 8 myths: Sexual health and safety

By Harish P Friday, September 16, 2016 - 23:57
How well informed are you when it comes to STIs, birth control etc.? We bust some popular myths surrounding sexual wellbeing and safety.
  1. You can’t get pregnant during your periods
    Though uncommon, it is not impossible for a woman to get pregnant on sex during her periods. Sperm can stick around in the uterus for a few days (three to five) after sex and if she ovulates during this time, conception can take place.
  2. You can use any lubricant along with a condom
    Some of us are tempted to use anything we can lay hands on as lubrication. But remember that baby oils and Vaseline (Petroleum-jelly) can break down latex condoms and increase probability of STI transmission. So, make sure your lubricant has ‘water-soluble’ written on the pack.
  3. Size is everything!
    A man’s psychological sexual health and performance is often thought to be related to the size of his penis. A recent study has concluded that the average human penis is 13.12 cm long and 11.66 cm in circumference. Another study says penis size may be related to the man’s confidence but not much to his sexual performance. Also, most women orgasm by stimulation to clitoris rather than vagina. And deep-penetrating penises are not relevant to clitoral orgasms anyway.

    Watch this Love Matters animated video about Penis shapes and sizes.
  • Masturbation affects sperm count
    Masturbation is a healthy way to release old sperm. It also teaches you what your body likes, bettering performance during sex. Men produce new sperm at a staggering rate. There is no research or study that makes direct correlation between masturbation and low sperm count.
  • STIs can spread by sharing toilet seats
    In case of almost all STIs, direct contact of skin or genitals or other bodily fluids with infected people is required. Urine usually cannot carry STI, so toilet seats are safe on that count. Besides, most STI agents cannot survive outside the human body for a long time.
  • Oral sex cannot transmit STDs
    This is a dangerous myth. Some sexually transmitted diseases can be transmitted both ways - from mouth to genitals and from genitals to mouth. Be it oral sex, anal sex, vaginal sex, or even, kissing. Which STD spreads by which act varies from type to type.

    Read more about STDs and how to prevent them.
  • Sex during pregnancy harms the baby
    Safety around having sex during pregnancy depends upon multiple factors. However, it is something you should discuss with your doctor. In most normal cases, the woman can continue having sex right until the water breaks or she enters labour, using normal precautions and bit of general caution.
  • Frequent or too little sex is bad
    A study by Kinsey Institute showed that depending on your age you should have sex from one in three days up to once in six days. Meanwhile, most sex therapists agree that psychologically, whatever suits the need of yourself and your partner is normal. So, just as anywhere else, quality is more important than quantity. More or less are not in themselves.
     
  • Have you got any more sexual health myths and facts? Put them down as comments below or post them on Facebook. If you have any questions, visit our discussion forum

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