14th September 2020
SEX DURING THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) PANDEMIC
TIPS TO KEEP YOURSELF SAFE:
Make sure you know how COVID-19 spreads. Keep up to date with the latest news and advice
• You can get COVID-19 from a person who has it, or if you have COVID-19 you can pass it on to others
• The virus can spread to people who are within about 6 feet of a person with COVID-19 especially when that person coughs or sneezes
• Kissing and intimate contact can easily pass COVID-19
Masturbation is safe!
Masturbation will not spread COVID-19, especially if you wash your hands (and any sex toys) with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after sex.
Only have sex with a partner living in your household
To comply with the government advice to prevent transmission, it’s really important that the only people you have sex with are those who live within your household. You should not be having sex if so doing means you have to breach government guidance not to mix households.
• Skip sex if you or your partner is not feeling well.
• If you or a partner may have COVID-19, avoid sex and especially kissing.
• If you start to feel unwell, you may be about to develop symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever and/or a cough
• If you or your partner has a medical condition that can lead to more severe COVID-19, you may also want to skip sex.
If you usually meet your sex partners online or make a living by having sex, take a break from in-person dates. Video dates, sexting or chat rooms may be options for you.
Take a look at some more information about Coronavirus and Sex https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/newsbeat-52063221
We strongly advise you to do all you can to protect your sexual health during these uncertain times. Here are a few things to think about:
Don’t delay emergency contraception
If you think you need emergency contraception, do not delay seeking help.
• YorSexualHealth will continue to provide free emergency hormonal contraception and emergency coils (IUD) as required following a telephone consultation. Please call us on 01904 721111 and advise our booking team that you need emergency contraception
• GPs can also provide free emergency contraception
• Pharmacies may make a charge for this, depending on your age and where you live
Seek advice quickly if you think you may have been exposed to HIV
Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) is an anti-HIV medication that is prescribed to a HIV negative person within 72 hours of potential exposure to HIV. Ideally it should be started within 24 hours. Contact us for advice as quickly as possible. It may be helpful to use this online tool to assess your risk https://www.tht.org.uk/PEP-tool
Make sure you have enough contraceptive pills
If you use the contraceptive pill (or patch or ring) check now how many you have left and contact the place you get it from as soon as possible if you think you may run out soon. If you do run out, make sure you use another method of contraception/condoms or avoid sex altogether
If you are taking PrEP make sure you have enough medication
It’s really important that you only have sex with those who live within your household in line with government guidance.
Contact us as soon as possible if you think you are likely to run out of medication
Protect yourself and your partner – use condoms
If you cannot be sure whether you or your partner has a sexually transmitted infection, use condoms. These are available online via our website to under 25s and those most at risk of STIs. Online STI testing is free so if you haven’t been tested since your last change of partner please use our online services
We are here to help – our services are free, friendly and confidential
If you are worried about your sexual health and you can’t find the information you need on our website please get in touch. Whilst we encourage everyone to follow the government’s latest advice about Covid-19 and social distancing/self-isolation, we recognise that some people may be concerned to tell us that they have had sex, particularly if this was with a person outside their own household. Our services are confidential and our staff are here to help anyone who has concerns about their sexual health.