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Oral Sex and STDs

What is oral sex?

Oral sex is when you stimulate your partner’s genitals (penis, vagina or anus) with your mouth, lips or tongue OR they stimulate your penis or anus.

Can I get an STD from oral sex?

Yes. Many STDs, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes and HPV can be spread through oral sex.

  • Any time there is an exchange of fluid from a partner’s vagina or penis through the mouth or another opening, there is a risk of transmitting an STD if either partner has one.
  • This means if your partner has an STD in their mouth or throat and your receive oral sex from that partner, you can get an STD on your penis, anus or rectum.
  • Also if your partner has a genital or anal STD infection, you can get that STD in your mouth or throat from giving them oral sex.
  • There is a small chance of getting and giving HIV through oral sex, too.

What if neither of us have symptoms?

You can still get or give an STD through oral sex even if you or your partner doesn’t have symptoms.

How can I protect myself?

  • Being in a long-term monogamous relationship with a partner who has been tested and is known to be uninfected reduces your chances of getting an STD during oral sex.
  • Abstaining from oral sex is the best way to protect yourself but if you do have oral sex, always use condoms or a dental dam.

Oral sex condoms?

If you’ve ever had a dentist’s glove in your mouth, you know latex doesn’t taste very good. Many condom brands have flavored condoms to make using one during oral sex more enjoyable. Flavored condoms are a fun way to have oral sex safely.

Avoid using flavored condoms for vaginal intercourse.  The artificial flavoring can contain sugars and other chemicals that may cause vaginal infection.  To reduce the risk of STDs and pregnancy during vaginal intercourse, just use a regular condom.

What’s a dental dam?

It’s a piece of latex that is used to cover the genitals so there is no direct mouth-to-genital or mouth-to-anus contact.

Place dental dam here
  • You can get dental dams at a clinic, at stores that sell safe sex supplies, or you can make one yourself.
  • If you are making a dental dam out of a condom you may want to use a condom that is for oral sex and doesn’t have lubricant on it. You can also make a dental dam using plastic wrap.
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