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Sexual Safety Guide for Bisexual

STIsAs a Bisexual-Single, when you think of safe sex the first thing that usually pops in your head is CONDOMS! Well I’m here to tell you that while condoms are a great line of defense (and the only prevention method that is also a contraceptive), but they are not the only line of defense. In today’s world full of this magic called “science,” other methods of keeping yourself and your partners free of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) do exist and are changing the ways that Bisexual-Couples are looking after their health!

Let’s get started with the most common myth we hear first about dating bisexual men!

Human Immunodeficiency Virus

For Women choosing to be in a relationship or hook up with a Bi Curious Man, they have heard this one from even their closest friends. The common myth is that a bisexual man will ultimately get HIV/AIDS from another man and bring it home to the misses. But luckily there is a great new one-a-day pill called PrEP, Pre Exposure Prophylactic or Truvada, which protects an HIV negative individual up to 96% from being infected by the virus! In most cases PrEP can be obtained for free because the makers at Gilead Science INC offer a coupon program.

But what if you or he is already living with HIV?! There’s a silver lining to that as well. With current medications, if someone has adheres to their treatment and remains virally supressed for over 6 months, it is impossible for them to pass on their HIV infection to their partner. In fact, they can also have babies who are also free of the virus.

Wait there are other STIs out there!

Yes, STIs are out there, waiting for the opportune moment to enter your life while you’ve got your pants down or thrown across the room somewhere. There are other preventative measures you can take on most of the incurable ones as well!

Human Papillomavirus

We all remember the old commercials of the kids jumping ropes singing “One less, One less,” for awareness of Human Papillomavirus or HPV in Women. But not many people know that the vaccine also protects MEN! The infection can lead to cervical cancer, infertility, and beyond that can be a pain in the rear end (pun intended). HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection with most men and women regardless of their orientation being exposed at some point in their lives. In many cases, the Gardasil Vaccine can prevent some forms of the virus (HPV types 6 and 11, which cause 90% of Genital Warts)! These vaccines are recommended for people under the age of 26.

But if you or your partner are already living with HPV, don’t just abandon ship! There are ways to treat out breaks. Out breaks, as they are commonly refereed to, are episodes when the virus is the most contagious through shedding of cells and visible sores. During this time, sexual contact should be halted as the outbreak can lead to infection of a non-carrier or infecting a new site on the body!

With the help of a medical diagnosis and treatment, out breaks can last shorter periods of time and heal faster. Even after the outbreak has disappeared it is important to remember that shedding is still occurring for up to a week! Condom usage is recommended if the effected area can be covered!

Syphilis

Oh the Great Imitator! Syphilis can often act as many other diseases, even the flu! Sometimes it is harder for a female to see her canker, a sore that is an inflammation of the skin where infection occurred, but even in men there may be no obvious signs! Syphilis is the most common STI for men who have sex with men.

It can be painful or even painless, but once it gets into your system and isn’t treated it can lead to some pretty nasty side-effects, including insanity! Syphilis is a bacterial infection, which means that it can be cured with a few shots of penicillin. If you do not catch it in time though, rashes can develop on the pads of your hands and feet, as well as cause neurological damage that is not reversible. The best way to confirm an syphilis infection is to go get tested at your local health department! Many times your primary physicians cannot identify the beginning stages of syphilis and will misdiagnose it as a herpes outbreak.

Chlamydia 

While none of these care incurable, they surely put a damper on your sex life. Chlamydia and Gonorrhea are both bacterial infections that can be treated with antibiotics! Both of these infections can be symptomless or exhibitunique characteristics.

Chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the UK and here in the USA Chlamydia is still a big deal! If left untreated it can cause difficulty for women to get pregnant. It is passed by having oral, anal, or vaginal sex with someone who is a carrier of the infection. Men who have Chlamydia do not necessarily have to ejaculate during penetration to pass on their infection. The best way to protect yourself from Chlamydia is through latex condoms and dental dams.

How do you know if you have Chlamydia? Well, most people do not know. Often if symptoms are present they come in the form of vaginal or penile discharge or pain when urinating. Both men and women can get Chlamydia infections in their rectums, the symptoms include swelling, burning, and bloody discharge. But the most sure fire way of knowing, as with any infection, is a visit to a medical professional!

Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea is another curable STI, but this one infects moist areas of the body! These areas can range from female reproductive tracts, vaginas, urethras, rectums, mouths/throats, and EVEN EYES!! The best line of defense in avoiding a gonorrhea infection is condom usage! While it can be asymptomatic, some symptoms may occur such as a pus-like drip coming from the penis, hence the infections nick name “The Drip,” pain when urinating and swelling of the penile glands. If the infection takes root in the throat it will cause a persistent sore throat that could last for weeks.

In females, symptoms can often be mistaken for a yeast infecting! They exhibit some of the common discharge, lower abdomen pains, more frequent urination and pain, as well as fever and abdominal pains.

Luckily, Gonorrhea is a curable infection treated with an antibiotic. After completing the treatment refrain from sexual activity until your medical professional says it is safe to get back on the saddle!

So what can we do to reduce our risk?!

Safe SexWhile STIs can happen to anyone, regardless of their sexual orientation, and it may seem that bisexual dating increases these chances, you have the tools to remain in good sex health! Using condoms, or even condom less sex, requires communication with your partner. It is proven that people in polyamorous relationships suffer from less STIs and that can be contributed to one key factor HONESTY with their partners!

When the moment is right, or every Friday night, and a threesome is on your agenda remember to use a different condom every time for every hole! Anal to Vaginal sex can be quite fun, but mixing the bacteria from an anus into a vagina will lead to a nasty infection of E. Coli a major case or septic shock!

When playing with toys it is always good to remember to clean them after each use with warm water, soap, and to let them air dry! Some stores sell cleaners specifically for sex toys, these are also a good option. When using lubricants on toys, stick to water based-lubricants since silicone-based lubricants will compromise the silicone of the toy and cause it to break down!

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