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Gay sex! (Keep it safe)
by Marvin April 27th 2009, 03:58 PM

Keeping It Safe
By Anonymous

(Please note: This is a guide, and only advises on safer sex. It can not guarantee 100% protection, but greatly reduces risks. It's wise to know your sexual partners and their sexual habits, to further lower this risk.)

Introduction - STIs

So we all know that when a guy's sperm goes into a girl's vagina, she can get pregnant. I don't know about you, but my sex ed seemed most concerned about this. However it isn't the only risk involved in sex, and you don't have to have heterosexual intercourse to be at risk. I'm sure you all know a big risk of sex, particularly unprotected sex, is STIs - sexually transmitted infections. These can manifest themselves visibly with sores, abnormal discharges, warts, or even little insects (crabs). Sometimes there are no physical symptoms, like in many cases of HIV, or chalmydia. For a list of STIs, see:

Information on Sexually Transmitted Infections

Now getting to my point. Whether or not the gay community know of STIs, there is a high rate of infections. Perhaps this is because gays often feel less obliqued to use protection, perhaps due to the mentality safe sex is to stop pregnancy. But gay sex is no excuse not to use protection. I know people in general don't want to use protection, but it's important that you do, if you want to protect yourself against STIs.

Men who sleep with men

Unprotected anal sex is a very high risk behaviour, higher then vaginal sex. Anal sex poses higher risks due to it being more likely to get torn skin in the act. Your anus is not naturally lubricated. To be blunt, shoving something up it, is going to cause damage; particularly if it's a new thing for you. With torn skin, the bodily fluids of your partner are more likely to enter the blood stream. This allows for higher chances of HIV infections, and such. Although there are risks of the condom splitting, much of the risks, as with vaginal sex, are significantly lowers with a condom. You can get special extra strength condoms designed for anal sex, and you can also get lube, to aid in smoother penetration. Barebacking (anal sex without a condom) is a very risky behaviour.

You can use dental dams, or a cut (down the middle of the condom, I'm sure if you Google this there will be instructions) condom, if you want to give oral stimulation to the anus.

Also, if you are having sex with someone who's STI status you don't know, oral sex, particularly to men, is still a fairly high risk behaviour. It's worth using a condom here too. If you are unsure how to pose this to your sexual partner, perhaps get flavoured condoms, and suggest it's for that.

STIs and men who sleep with men

Depending on the sexual acts you are engaging in, there are numerous possible STIs you can get from unprotected sex. HIV being a big concern with anal sex, as there is no natural lubrication, so it's more likely to get tears on your sex. This also increases the risk of Hepatitis viruses, namely B and C. Hep C is transmitted through blood only. There are also risks of chlamydia (penile and rectal infections. In fact, rectal chlamydia in gay men is more common), gonorrhea, herpes, genital warts, syphilis. Unprotected oral sex also carries risks, although lower then anal sex. The previous list of STIs is applicable here, along with a believed risk of HIV (as it is in semen). You can get STIs from both giving and receiving oral sex. If you are orally stimulating the anus, there is also risks of Hepatitis B. Condoms for both anal sex and oral sex greatly reduce the risk (but doesn't get rid of it completely), and dental dams can reduce the risk for anal-oral stimulation. Also there is a risk of crabs.

Women who sleep with women

As for lesbians, you are still at risk. Though potentially, if you don't sleep with men, your biggest risk factor comes from sharing sex toys. This is things like dildos and vibrators. If you are going to share sex toys, either wash it off before using it on the other person, or alternatively, and perhaps easier, use a condom on it. For oral sex, you can use a device called a dental dam, which a small sheet of latex you place over where you want to give oral pleasure to, usually the vagina. If you want to use a dam, but cant find one, you can cut a condom in half, I've heard of some suggesting cling film as a last resort. Also if you are fingering someone, keep your nails short, also fingernails can tear the vagina, and dirt from under your nails can cause infections. Rubbing your genitals together ('scissoring') also can transfer STIs, as can touching your partner and then yourself (or the other way round) without washing your hands. So avoid transferring their bodily fluids to your genitals. You can do this by not touching yourself after touching them, washing your hands, or wearing latex gloves that you can remove after touching them.

STIs and women who sleep with women

Despite what medical professionals, or STI information may say, WSW are at risk for various STIs. Often this is unknown, as there just haven't been many studies on it, and medical professionals tend to not receive much LGBT training. WSW, depending on their sexual practices are at risk for chlamydia, gonorrhea, BV, HPV (genital warts and the virus believed to cause cervical cancer), trich, and crabs. If you don't think the health care profession are offering you enough tests, be pushy. It's your health, not theirs.

Get Tested!

Regardless of what safe sex options you choose to use, you should always get regular STI checks if you are sexually active, for some this can be every 3 months, 6 months, or whatever you feel comfortable with. These will involve the same testing techniques as with straights. The sooner an STI is caught, the easier it is to deal with, and it's better safe then sorry. You can get still STIs, don't think it won't happen to you. If you intend to have unprotected sex with someone, particularly if you have no idea about their STI status, you are putting yourself at risk, think carefully.

Summary

Men:
- Always use a condom for penetrative sex.
- Oral sex still presents a risk, again, use condoms.
- A dental dam or condom cut in half can be used for anal/oral stimulation.
- Unprotected anal sex is a very high risk behaviour.

Women:
- Don't share sex toys - if you do, wash them after each use, or use a condom.
- Dental dams or a cut in half condom can be used for protected oral sex.
- Keep your nails short, they can be dangerous otherwise.

Last edited by Halcyon; August 2nd 2016 at 04:16 AM.
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