a couple's feet poking out from beneath a comforter

Always remember safety first, even between the sheets.

There’s one hot topic on campus and that’s sex–but it’s not about the partners, positions or dirty details. It’s about how to have safe sex in college. Lately there have been many campus events focused on promoting safer sex for students, so what’s the big deal?

College is typically seen as a time of freedom, and often students choose to experiment with drinking, drugs, and hookups. And it’s all fun and games, right? Wrong. Hooking up with a sexual partner without asking about their sexual experience could lead to sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and nobody wants those. Not only that, you need to think about the barriers you’ll be using to prevent pregnancy.

We all know that abstinence is the best answer for prevention of STIs and pregnancy, but not everyone wants to wait. Whether it’s with a boyfriend or girlfriend, an old friend or a new found acquaintance, you need to be prepared to ask some important questions.

  1. How many sexual partners have you had?
  2. Have you been tested for STIs?
  3. Do you have a form of protection?

Now, I understand that all of these questions might be hard to ask, but they are essential for your own sexual health. I mean, could you imagine telling your future husband or wife that you have an STI from a fling you had in college, or telling your parents that you’re pregnant or got someone pregnant from a one-night stand?

Cassie-wrong-way-condom-6

A condom is one of the easiest and most effective methods as long as you put it on correctly.

So, now what? Get protected! Unfortunately, condoms aren’t always enough, so two sexual barrier methods are recommended. What are the many birth control methods are available you ask?

  • Male Condom
  • Female Condom
  • Diaphragm
  • Spermicide
  • Cervical Caps
  • Birth Control Patch
  • Birth Control Pill
  • Contraceptive Injections
  • Contraceptive Implants
  • Intrauterine Device (IUD)
  • Ring (Nuvaring is one brand)
  • Withdrawal

Luckily for Winona State students, many of these options are available through Health & Wellness Services. For more information on these barrier methods or more information on sexual health, contact Health Services or visit Semcac.

Whatever type of birth control you use is up to you, but it is never ok to let a sexual partner talk you out of using any at all. If a guy says he is too big for a condom, run away as this absolutely proves he is lying!

Protect yourself and your partner(s) from STIs and pregnancies by always practicing safe sex.

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Cassandra Tokach

Cassandra graduated in 2014 with a BA in English. She is from Savage, MN and her hobbies include reading, journaling, enjoying nature and being active outdoors.

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