In order to talk about how to maintain sexual health we need to first look at what can impact on our sexual health.
Everybody experiences different things throughout their life that can impact on how they feel about themselves and if these feelings leave you in a place of not being able to enjoy yourself sexually then they negatively impact upon your sexual health.
These negative feelings then may lead you to make choices like engaging in sexual activities that can leave you at risk from Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI’s) then they have negatively impacted upon your physical sexual health.
Contracting an STI can often negatively impact upon your emotional sexual health and your mental sexual health. If you are religious and believe in only having sex after marriage, and then have sex with someone before you get married, that may negatively impact upon your spiritual sexual health.
In order to maintain your sexual health you need to be able to maintain all sexual aspects of yourself. What impacts on one person may not impact on another so the first thing you need to do is to decide what your sexual values are.
It also helps to maintain your sexual health if you know what you like and don’t like. If you can answer questions like:
- What makes me feel sexy?
- What does not make me feel sexy?
- What fantasies do I have?
Then you are more likely to be able to communicate this to other people.
If you are able to communicate your needs openly to a partner(s) then you can have honest and truthful discussions about what is working and what is not working for you both.
Being able to negotiate sexually is a skill. If you can negotiate sexually then you can discuss the use of barriers like condoms and female condoms, you can choose who you do, and do not have sexual contact with and where that sexual contact happens.
Influences like alcohol/drugs can impair your ability to think clearly and to accurately gauge not only a situation, but also a person. Drinking less alcohol or making the decision to only have sexual contact with someone when you are not under the influence of drugs/alcohol can help you to maintain your sexual health.
Knowing your sexual health status can also help you to maintain your sexual health. In order to find out your physical sexual health status you can attend an STI Clinic to get a full sexual health screen.
For more information on STI screening, go to our STI screening section.
We provide support and counselling around sexual health so if you would like support with your mental or emotional sexual health please call 061314354 or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org