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STI's - what to know and what to look out for

Updated: Apr 23, 2020

If you have had unprotected vaginal, oral or anal sex you may be susceptible to contracting an STI (sexually transmitted infection).

Some STI’s carry no physical or visible symptoms at all which is why it is important to get an STI check once you have had unprotected sex.

However, if you experience some of the following symptoms it is advised to visit your local GP as they may be caused by having an STI.

  • Sores or bumps on the genital areas

  • Painful experience when you urinate

  • Discharge from the penis

  • Unusual or odd smelling discharge from the vagina

  • Unusual vaginal bleeding

  • Pain during sex

  • Lower abdominal pain

The only way to fully protect yourself from catching an STI is not to have sex. However, if you are going to have sex here are some tips to lower the risk:

  • Use a female or male condom (consistently and correctly). A simple search on YouTube will provide you with an array of videos showing you how to apply a male condom correctly

  • Have regular check-ups for STI’s. Click here to find a list of STI clinics in Ireland.

  • Abstain from having sex is the most effective way to prevent yourself from getting an STI.

  • Reduce the amount of partners that you have sex with. This will greatly lower your chance of contracting an STI.

  • Get to know your partner’s sexual history before you have sex with them. Have they had unprotected sex before? Have they ever gotten checked for an STI? How long ago was it?

  • Don’t drink alcohol or take drugs as when under the influence - our sense of judgement is lowered which may lead to having unprotected sex.

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