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Student Health Services at Moffitt Health Center

Sexual Health

Basic Guide for Maintaining Your Sexual Health 

What do you want from a relationship? It is up to you to get what you want. It's also up to you to avoid getting what you don't want. If the relationship is one that might involve sex, don't do it too soon. Make sure that both of you are ready for sex. Have each other's consent and decide what you want in a sexual relationship.

Things to keep in mind:

  • Sex should be guilt-free. If either of you are feeling uncomfortable, wait.
  • Sex should be something you can talk about. If you can't talk about sex openly, STOP, you're not ready. Issues such as protecting each other, likes and dislikes should be discussed.
  • Sex too early in a relationship can actually prevent intimacy. Waiting builds intimacy and deepens a relationship.
  • Sex in a relationship should be associated with pleasant things such as respect, trust, love, happiness, and fulfillment, if these things are not present, you are not ready.
  • Sex is also associated with unpleasant things such as STI’s, a shallow relationship, unplanned pregnancy, and feelings of guilt.
  • Relationships can be challenging and confusing. Getting what you want from sex and relationships depends on you.
  • Communication is essential for a good relationship.
  • Talk to your partner effectively by listening and speaking honestly.
  • Talk openly about sex.
  • Discuss likes and dislikes.
  • Do you and your partner want the same commitment?
  • Always bring up what is bothering you.
  • Talk about protection.
  • Talk about your limits.
  • Share values that are important to you.

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) are infections transmitted through sexual contact including vaginal, anal, or oral contact. Some can even be spread through skin to skin contact. STI’s can cause many complications from lesions, pain, secondary infections, infertility, and death.

Youth Risk Factors for STIs GraphicCDC Youth STI Infographic

Youth Protection from STIs GraphicIn order to reduce your risk of contracting an STI practice the following prevention methods:

  • Know that complete abstinence is the only 100% way to protect yourself.
  • Be monogamous in your relationship.
  • Always use a latex condom or some form of barrier method protection to significantly
  • reduce your risk of contraction of an STI.
  • Use only water-based lubricants.
  • Don't have sex if you're drunk, high or under the influence of any drugs.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of STI’s.   
  • Know your status. Get tested.

Proportion of STIs Among Youth Infographic

Many times STI’s show no symptoms, so it is important to be checked if you are at risk. View the list of symptoms for various STIs as it is provided by Mayo Clinic. It is important to note that many STI’s have similar symptoms so testing for STI’s on a regular basis is key to staying informed about your sexual health.

Common Sexually Transmitted Infections

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) are infections transmitted through sexual contact, including vaginal, anal, or oral contact. It is possible to transmit an STI without having symptoms of the infection.  STIs can cause complications, including lesions, pain, secondary infections, infertility, and death.

4 Types of sex that may expose you to an STI:

  • Oral Sex
  • Anal Sex
  • Vaginal Sex
  • Mutual Masturbation
  • Bacterial infection
  • Transmission: oral, anal, and vaginal sex and mutual masturbation (bodily fluids)
  • Symptoms: most people have no symptoms; may experience vaginal discharge, burning/pain with urination, or itching
  • Treatment: can be treated with oral antibiotics
  • Bacterial infection
  • Transmission:  oral, anal, and vaginal sex and mutual masturbation (bodily fluids)
  • Symptoms: often no symptoms; may experience burning with urination and abnormal discharge
  • Treatment: can be treated with oral antibiotics
  • Viral infection
  • Transmission: oral, anal, and vaginal sex and mutual masturbation (skin-to-skin)
  • Symptoms: may have no symptoms; HSV-1 symptoms include cold sores or fever blisters on the mouth, HSV-2 symptoms include genital sores and blisters
  • Treatment: cannot  be cured but symptoms can be managed with medication
  • Viral infection that can develop into AIDS if not treated
  • Transmission: oral, anal, and vaginal sex and mutual masturbation (bodily fluids)
  • Symptoms: may have no symptoms for years; symptoms include tiredness, fever, and aches
  • Treatment: cannot be cured but symptoms and progression of infection can be managed with medication
 
  • Viral infection
  • Transmission:  oral, anal, and vaginal sex and mutual masturbation (skin-to-skin)
  • Symptoms: most people have no symptoms; may experience genital warts with some types, burning/pain with urination, burning or itching
  • Treatment: no cure but will usually resolve on its own, treatment is available
  • Bacterial infection that spreads through the body
  • Transmission: oral, anal, and vaginal sex and mutual masturbation (skin-to-skin)
  • Symptoms: 3 stages of infection
    • Stage 1: painless chancre sore
    • Stage 2: temporary rash, lesions, or flu-like symptoms
    • Stage 3: without treatment, can cause blindness, heart or brain damage, or death
  • Treatment: can be treated with antibiotics but medication cannot undo any damage already done prior to treatment
  • Parasitic infection; increases risk for other STDs
  • Transmission: vaginal sex
  • Symptoms: often no symptoms; may experience vaginal discharge, genital discomfort, burning with urination, irritation of the penis
  • Treatment: can be treated with oral antibiotics

Additional Resources

What is Sexual Health?

5 Action Steps for Good Sexual Health

The Lowdown on How to Prevent STDs

CDC Get Yourself Tested: The Lowdown on the Most Common STDs

Birth Control Comparison Chart

Hours 

Fall and Spring Semesters

Monday-Wednesday:
8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Thursday: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Friday: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
 

*Pharmacy opens at 9 a.m. Monday - Friday*

Semester Breaks and Summer

Clinic and Pharmacy
Monday - Friday
9 a.m. - Noon, 1 p.m - 4 p.m.

Contact Us

Student Health Services at Moffitt Health Center
Scott Hall
118 College Drive Box #5066
Hattiesburg, MS 39406

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Email
clinicadminFREEMississippi

Phone
601.266.5390

Fax
601.266.4205