Effect of alcohol and drugs on sexual health
- Alcohol and drugs lowers your inhibitions and interferes with your decision making, often resulting in unprotected sex.
- Alcohol and drugs interfere with your ability to enter into a safer sex negotiation.
- Alcohol and drugs usually result in poor sexual performance but can have the opposite effect – change in sexual performance.
- Alcohol and drugs generally create serious relationship problems;
- Alcohol and drugs can have serious financial implications;
- Alcohol and drugs generally reduce immune system functionality, which increases your vulnerability.
Strategies and tips to reduce harm
Reduce frequency of drugs and alcohol use.
- Stop taking drugs and alcohol when having sex.
- Avoid friends and places where you might be tempted to use excessive drugs and alcohol.
- Ensure safer sex negotiations.
- If you are injecting, use clean water and don’t share equipment.
- Regular health check-ups and HIV Testing, at least every 6 months.
- Be faithful to one partner or reduce partner turn-over.
- Always carry condoms and lube with you (e.g., Play safe pack).
- Avoid places where you might be tempted to have high risk sex e.g. dark rooms.
Strategies: condoms, lube, dental dams, gloves, testing, self-exploration, knowledge, communication about sexual histories, safer sex negotiation (Go to SAFETY ZONE section of this website for more information on this).