Summer is a time for sun and lots of fun, especially if you are going on holiday. If you have booked a holiday, it is important to think about staying sexually safe during your trip; after all, no one wants to end their holiday by finding out that they have caught something nasty.
Here are three tips to help you stay sexually safe this summer.
Remember to pack condoms
Lots of people forget to pack condoms for their holiday. This can be a big problem; in fact, recent studies found that one-fifth of people have unprotected sex on holiday because they don’t have condoms. You should definitely make sure that you have some in your suitcase, even if you are already on the pill. Diarrhoea and sickness can both make the pill less effective, so you should double up with your protection. Remember that the pill does not protect you from STIs.
If you are under the age of 21, you can collect condoms for free from most sexual health services. You can also pick them up from most supermarkets and pharmacies.
Buying condoms abroad
If you forget to buy condoms – or you manage to run out! – you can pick some condoms up abroad. Most people go for familiar condom brands that are sold in the UK; if not, you should look for condoms with the CE mark or the KITE mark, as this means they meet European standards. It can also be useful to check the condom foil to make sure it hasn’t been damaged or punctured.
Don’t forget about STIs
If you have unprotected sex on holiday, you should do an STI test when you get home. You may feel fine; however, most STI symptoms don’t show up for a few weeks, so you could still have an infection. If you want to do this but don’t want to go to a clinic, don’t worry – you can order chlamydia testing kits London to arrive at your house from websites such as https://www.bexleysexualhealth.org/chlamydia_screening/.
Remember to make sure you that wait two weeks before you test yourself, as it can take a while for the infection to show up on the test. You will usually need to provide a urine sample or a sample from inside your mouth.