Having Sex Without Protection – What Should I Do?

Having sex without protection is risky, no matter what your age. But it’s even more dangerous if you don’t have other forms of birth control in place.

Condoms don’t protect against all STIs, so it’s still important to get tested. There are several things you can do: 1. Take an STD test.

Take an STD test

STIs (or sexually transmitted infections and diseases) are bacteria, viruses or parasites that can be spread through oral, vaginal or anal sex. The best protection against STIs is to always use condoms (especially when it’s one partner with another) and limit the number of partners you have. But even if you’re using condoms, some STIs (such as HIV) don’t show any symptoms, so it’s important to get tested and treated early on to prevent passing the infection to your partner or having any long-term health problems.

Taking an STD test is quick, easy and confidential. You can get a free test at a sexual health clinic or you can buy home testing kits online for some STIs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhoea. You should also be aware that some STIs can take a while to show up, so you should get tested at least a couple of days after you’ve had unprotected sex.

Many people don’t realise that they have an STI, because they don’t experience any obvious symptoms. This is why it’s so important to use condoms, and to take an STD test regularly, especially when you’ve had sex without protection. It’s also a good idea to take an STD test before starting any new relationships, and if you have a chronic health condition such as heart disease, diabetes or epilepsy you should consider getting tested more often.

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Take emergency contraception pills

You can take emergency contraception (also known as the morning-after pill) if you want to prevent pregnancy and haven’t used any other forms of birth control. These pills are most effective if you take them as soon as possible after unprotected sex, but they can be taken up to five days after sex.

A progestin-only pill like Plan B One-Step or Next Choice is available without a prescription. These pills work by blocking your ovaries from releasing an egg and thickening the cervical mucus to prevent sperm from entering your uterus. They can also reduce your chances of getting pregnant by thinning the lining of your uterus.

Another option is ulipristal acetate, which you can get from a health care provider by prescription. This new type of morning-after pill works by preventing ovulation and can be more effective than other types of medication. It can be taken up to five days after unprotected sex and is more effective than levonorgestrel pills.

Remember that these medications do not protect against sexually transmitted infections, such as HIV, and they should only be used to prevent pregnancy. Using condoms is the best way to avoid STDs, and you should always use a method of protection that is reliable. Seek immediate medical attention if you have signs of a sexually transmitted infection, such as vaginal discharge or bleeding.

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Take a pregnancy test

There are a few things you can do if you think you might be pregnant after having unprotected sex. The earliest sign of pregnancy is usually a missed period but you might also notice tender, swollen breasts and mood swings. You can take an over-the-counter pregnancy test to find out whether you’re expecting, although the results won’t be accurate until after you ovulate. If you don’t want to wait for the results, then there are other ways of preventing pregnancy, such as taking the emergency contraception pill (also known as the morning-after pill), which is effective up to five days after unprotected sex.

Most pregnancy tests work by detecting a hormone in your urine called human chorionic gonadotropin, or hCG. Usually, you have to wait until your first missed period before getting an accurate result, but some people can get the results sooner, depending on how often they start their periods and when they were last ovulating.

Pregnancy testing is available at Family Planning clinics, from GPs and sexual health clinics, and in pharmacies and supermarkets. It’s best to have the test done in the morning so that your urine is more concentrated. You can also ask for a blood test, which provides slightly more accurate results and will tell you if you’re pregnant before your next missed period.

Talk to your partner

If your partner refuses to use protection or the condom broke in the heat of the moment, it’s important to talk to them. Tell them that you’re concerned about getting an STI and you want to be safe. Explain that some STIs can lead to serious health problems, infertility, and even death. If they’re not willing to agree to protect themselves, it may be time to end the relationship.

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Having unprotected sex can also increase your risk of a urinary tract infection (UTI) if you don’t pee afterward and wash around your genitals. It’s also a good idea to drink lots of water and eat fruits and vegetables so that your body can get the nutrients it needs.

Talking to your partner about sex and protecting yourself can feel awkward. Try to find a time when both of you are calm and can have a conversation without interruptions. It’s best to start this conversation sooner rather than later, so that you have more time to discuss your options and decide what to do. You can also take an STD test to give yourself peace of mind, but you should only do this if you have your partner’s consent. Some STIs don’t have symptoms, so you might not know that you have one until it’s too late. You can get a quick and easy STD test at most healthcare providers’ offices, Planned Parenthood clinics, community health centers, and public health departments.

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