Thursday, April 8, 2010
Myth #4- Condoms ="SAFE SEX"
Okay, we're on a roll. Myth #4 is that CONDOMS=SAFE SEX. Condoms absolutely DECREASE greatly your risk of both pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, especially for the STDs transmitted via body fluids- gonorrhea, chlamydia, HIV and trichomonas. However, condoms can only cover ONE area- I don't think I need to spell out which one. Diseases that can be transmitted outside that area, by direct skin-to-skin contact, can still be spread despite proper condom use. Which diseases are these? Herpes, HPV (the wart virus), syphilis, and pubic lice (crabs).
Also, because there is a roughly 10% failure rate of condoms through breakage, there is still a chance (1 in 10) of being exposed to potential disease. Not to mention that in real life studies, condom failure rates are more like 20%, because they are simply not used consistently.
So what to do? GET TESTED-both you and your partner. Know that really SAFE SEX means both partners are tested and known to be free of disease.
BOTTOM LINE: Condoms are very helpful in decreasing disease transmission, but don't be fooled that simply using condoms guarantees "SAFE SEX".