Protection against STIs
For most STIs, you can lower the risk of infection:
- Use a condom when having vaginal sex or anal sex.
- Use a condom if you share sex toys with other people. For instance: dildo, vibrator.
- Do not get blood or semen in your mouth during oral sex. This makes the risk of infection with HIV very small. When you use a condom or dental dam, you also reduce the risk of infection with other STIs.
Use a condom to protect yourself and your partner against STIs and HIV. If you do not want to use a condom, talk to a health professional about STI tests and HIV tests.
You are also protected against STIs if you and your regular partner (steady relationship) both test negatively for STIs and do not have sexual contact with other people. If you or your partner have sex with other people, always use a condom.
A condom also protects against unintended pregnancy. There are also other methods of contraception.
Other ways of protection
- Get vaccinated against hepatitis B and HPV. Ask a doctor.
- Only use your own injection material, or new material.
- If you are pregnant and have an STI, ask a doctor for advice.
- Use your own toothbrush (hepatitis B), towels and bed linen (scabies and pubic lice).
Talking to your partner and a health professional
If you have an STI you can infect someone else. Go to the doctor.
Talk to your partner about it and encourage him/her to go to a doctor. You protect yourself this way too. If your partner is not treated, you can become infected again if you have sex without a condom.
Do not have sex during your treatment or use a condom to lower the risk of infecting your partner.
If you have recently had sex with another person, warn him or her too. Then this person can also get tested and treated.
Ask a health professional for advice.