Disclaimer: The information, articles, and tips portrayed on this blog, while based on research, do not constitute medical advice. The opinions expressed are meant to educate and inform, but not to dictate lifestyle choices or personal beliefs. These articles are meant to provoke thought on issues surrounding college health and to inform the Hopkins community of healthy information and resources.


Tip of the Week: Safer Summer Lovin'

Summer romances are not only reserved for cheesy movies and pop songs. The sun, the fun, and the scantily clad people that come with them can make for a perfect setting for a summer fling. Whether hooking up with someone new or finally getting some together time with your long-distance flame, the weather may not be the only thing that's heating up. If you choose to engage in any sexual activity this summer, be sure to practice safer sex!

Remember, you don't have to be having intercourse to put yourself at risk of STIs. Foreplay and oral sex also carry their own share of risks. Not all STIs require fluid exchange (crabs, scabies, herpes), and not all STIs have visible symptoms (HPV, chlamydia, gonorrhea). There are many ways to be sexual without putting yourself in danger of pregnancy or infection. Use dental dams or condoms during oral sex, explore different sex toys, or try sensual massage. If you engage in vaginal or anal sex, use a condom and ensure you use it properly. Ladies, be sure to keep up with your birth control if prescribed. While summer schedules may vary, it's important to continue to take your birth control pills at the same time everyday to ensure effectiveness. If sexually active and not on birth control, summer break is a great opportunity to talk to your doctor about the best form for you. In case of any accidents or errors in use, check with your pharmacy about emergency contraception. For more tips on safer sex, click here.