Medically reviewed iconMedically Reviewed

Sexual Health

Your 4-Step Guide to Safe Sex

 With STIs running rampant throughout the country and unwanted pregnancies being the norm, this guide to safe sex is here to answer your questions and make sure that safe is also enjoyable sex. 

Feb 13, 2024

3 min read

Written by Rhea Kadakia
Medically Reviewed by 

Share Article

Share article icon for viewing share options
An informative collage about safe sex practices and STIs

A sexual wellness checklist- gif

According to Med India, about 6% of the Indian population is diagnosed with an STI every year. This equates to roughly seven crore people suffering from a curable, preventable infection. This guide on how to have safe sex will help you understand how to keep the STIs at bay, have a good time and avoid any unintended consequences of unsafe sex – including an unwanted pregnancy. 

A toolbox that represents the key points of consent- gif

1. No means no. What is consent?

Consent is the most critical part of safe sex. Consent is an agreement between partners to engage in sexual activity. Consent only counts if it’s readily and freely given. Coerced consent is NOT consent. Consent happens when all people involved in any kind of sexual activity agree to take part by choice

For consent to be valid, it needs to be given freely, and one must have the capacity to do so, i.e. consent doesn’t hold up if you are impaired, under the influence of substances or otherwise not able to provide 100 per cent agreement to engage in sexual activity, or if you are below the age of 18, which is the age of consent in India. Affirmative consent can help you better understand your and your partner’s boundaries, resulting in a more pleasurable experience for both of you. 

Consent is sexy- gif

2. Always use protection. But what is contraception?

Wearing is caring, a gif about condoms

Contraception is the prevention of pregnancy. It can be done through a procedure, medication, a device or the adoption of behaviours such as abstinence and the withdrawal method. Contraception also helps women take control of their reproductive health. 

There are many different kinds of contraceptives available; some of them are also preventative measures for sexually transmitted diseases (STIs). The most common STIs in India are syphilis, gonorrhoea, chlamydia, trichomoniasis and HIV. India also has the third-highest rate of HIV contraction in the world. Moreover, sexual transmission is responsible for 87.4 per cent of reported HIV cases in India. 

Protection during sex is a preventative measure against STIs or unwanted pregnancies- gif

What are the different kinds of contraceptives, and what will they protect you from?

different types of contraceptives- gif

There are hormonal and non-hormonal birth control methods available. These include permanent birth control (tubal ligation, tuba block or vasectomy), intrauterine devices (available as hormonal and non-hormonal birth control), the implant, the shot, the vaginal ring, patch and the pill, all of which are hormonal birth control methods. 

Emergency contraception is available as a hormonal contraceptive. Spermicide is used as a non-hormonal contraceptive, but it is important to note none of these methods protect you from STIs. Condoms are the only contraceptive that can help prevent STIs; however, condom use cannot guarantee absolute protection against STIs.

3. Urinate after you fornicate, but why?

It's important to pee after sex to avoid UTIs- gif

Peeing after sex helps clean out the urethra; it flushes out germs and can help prevent a urinary tract infection. Friction from sex can spread bacteria, which can go through the urethra and cause a UTI. Peeing within a 30-minute window of having sex is usually the most effective time frame to prevent UTIs. The longer you wait, the better the bacteria's chance of entering your bladder. 

4. Check yourself out (for STIs)

Get regularly tested for STIs- gif

Regular STI screenings are an important part of practising safe sex. STI tests are usually quick and painless. However, as they are not part of your regular check-ups, always specify to your  medical provider that you want to be tested for STIs and speak with them about which ones you should get tested for. You should test for STIs at least once a year, but if you’re engaging in sexual activity with multiple partners, get tested more frequently (every three to six months). Remember, if you have an STI, disclose this information to your partner, communicate and then come to an agreement. Moreover, if you contract any chronic or acute STIs, reach out to a medical practitioner because they are treatable, and most are curable. 

Always stay safe

Safe sex is self-care gif

Going the extra mile in life and love is always worth it. With this guide on how to have safe sex, you can make sure sex is fun without stressing over all the details. 

Medically reviewed by:

Dr Uday Thanawala, Obstetrician and Gynaecologist

Browse Topics

Share Article

Share article icon for viewing share options

Go To Articles