Ten Tips for Safer Sex

There are no guarantees when it comes to having safe sex between two people, but you can enjoy safer sex if you’re careful to follow the guidelines that the experts have developed.

1. Learn to Say No
No one ever died from sexual frustration, but you can’t say the same thing about sexually transmitted diseases. The less you know about a person, the greater the likelihood that he or she can infect you with a disease. So learn to say no to casual sex.

2. Limit Your Number of Partners
When you have sex with someone, not just the two of you are in the bed. Hiding under the covers is every partner with whom that person has eve had sex, and the partners of those partners. Any viruses that they may have left behind inside the warm, naked body presently in your bed are making a bee-line for any openings in your body.
To a virus, you’re nothing more than a host – the perfect play to reproduce and multiply – and if the process destroys you, well, all I can say is that their consciences aren’t as well developed as their ability to reproduce.

3. Don’t rely solely on your instincts
The problem with trusting your instincts when it comes to sexually transmitted diseases is that many people out there really believe that they are disease-free when, in fact, they are not. Some sexually transmitted diseases invade a host’s body and cause absolutely no symptoms, so when these people tell you they’ve never had any diseases, they give the appearance of being absolutely honest, because they are being absolutely honest. The difficulty that your never-failing instincts face in such a situation is that these people’s honesty isn’t worth a hoot.
When dealing with sexually transmitted diseases, it’s much better to be safe than sorry. Instead of trusting your instincts, put your faith in the rules of safer sex. In the long run, you won’t regret it.4. Never Dull Your Senses When You’re with Strangers
I often recommend to people that they have a glass of wine or two to help loosen them up, which can then lead to better sex. But that suggestion only applies when the two people involved are already a couple. In certain situations, any dulling of the senses caused by alcohol or drugs can prove very dangerous.
To practice safer sex you have to be responsible. And to be responsible, you have to have all, or at least most, of your faculties operating. So if the situation calls for keeping your wits about you order a nonalcoholic beverage, if you don’t want anybody to realize that you intend to stay sober.

5. Discuss Safer Sex in Advance
If you’re dating someone and the relationship is moving forward, don’t wait to talk about safer sex. The closer you get to the point where having sex is just on the horizon, the harder delaying going ahead will be.
Certainly, if you already have your clothes off, it’s far too late to suddenly think about safer sex. But I believe that you should have that safer sex discussion long before you reach that point. If you plan to insist that this potential partner get tested for AIDS, then you can expect a six-month waiting period before you can engage in intercourse. So the sooner you bring the topic to the table, the sooner you can begin having sex.

6. Use Condoms
Condoms do not offer absolute protection against sexually transmitted diseases. If used improperly, they can leak. Once in a while, they break. But compared to having intercourse without a condom, they are like the brick walls the third little piggy used to keep the wolf away.
You have no valid excuse not to use a condom. Men don’t lose their ability to have an orgasm by wearing a condom. Having intercourse using a condom is better than not having intercourse at all. When it comes to safer sex, there can be no exceptions to that rule.
To use a condom, you have to have one with you! Heat and age do affect condoms, so make sure that any condom you use is fresh. But in this day and age, not just men should carry condoms. Any woman who is sexually active should be prepared to keep herself safe from unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases as well.

7. Develop a Relationship Before You Have Sex
Some people get paranoid about safer sex, and I don’t blame them for taking every precaution imaginable. But for many people, safer sex is just not something that is always on their minds. The key to safer sex is to not have sex with anyone until you have developed a relationship with that person. If you get to know someone really well, if you ‘ve been dating for a while, if you’ve had long talks about life and love and know their sexual history – if, after all that, you really believe that having sex (with a condom, of course) is reasonably safe for the two of you, then you may decide to go ahead.
Fact is you have no absolute guarantees in life, and every day you must make choices, the outcome of which you can’t know in advance. You can’t let the unknown paralyze you entirely. Sometimes you just have to take a leap. However, if you take every possible precaution, the odds of success are a lot higher.

8. Don’t Engage in Risky Behavior
The chance of passing on HIV during anal sex is greater than during other types of sex. Unprotected oral sex is not safer sex. Having sex with someone you meet at a bar or bathhouse is dangerous. Going to a sex club is far from risk free. Wife swapping does not promote good health. Sharing needles is an invitation to sharing the HIV virus.
At the time that you engage in risky behavior, a certain thrill may come with the moment. But when you’re lying in a hospital dying, that thrill will not be a happy memory but a nightmare that you’ll live through over and over until the end.

9. Don’t forget about the other STD’s
While AIDS has grabbed the headlines, AIDS is only one of many sexually transmitted diseases. Most of these STD’s have been around for hundreds of years.
Some forms of syphilis and gonorrhea have become resistant to the normal types and doses of antibiotics, which means that they are no longer illnesses that you can just shrug off. Hepatitis B is much more contagious than most STDs; luckily, you can get a vaccine that prevents you from catching it. Doctors have no vaccine against herpes; nor do they have a cure. Usually, the partner of the person who has herpes ends up getting the disease as well. Some STDs, such as Chlamydia, are raging across the country. And now that cervical cancer has been linked to HPV infection, women need to remember that having sex with a high-risk partner can put them at higher risk for developing cancer.
Although you may be with somebody that you suppose doesn’t have AIDS, and you may even be right, that doesn’t mean that you are safe from catching an STD. The sexual scene is a bit of a war zone, so be careful.

10. Don’t Sell Your Other Options Short
If the main reason that you have sex is to have a baby, then intercourse is surely the only way for you to go. But if it is pleasure you are seeking, then you have plenty of other ways to get sexual satisfaction without undertaking the risks of intercourse.
What makes intercourse dangerous is the exchange of bodily fluids, which can contain viruses of various sorts. But orgasms don’t depend on an exchange of fluids. Hands and fingers are wonderfully agile and can give a lot of pleasure. If you want to be creative, you can even substitute your big toe. A man can rub his penis between a woman’s breasts, and a vibrator can give fabulous orgasms without passing on a drop of anything liquid.
If you really feel the need for sexual release, but you don’t know the person all that well, don’t sell these safer-sex practices short. You can get sexual satisfaction without having any regrets later on.
 
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