A lot of people like giving and getting oral sex! It’s so popular that people shorten it to “oral.” Oral sex means using your mouth on a partner’s privates. People can lick, suck, kiss or do other things that everyone’s excited about. It can be on or near someone’s front hole, penis, vagina, bottom growth, anus, or strapless.
STIs like herpes can spread through oral sex. But there are easy ways to lower your risk for STIs while having great oral!
What STIs can I get from oral sex?
Chlamydia, gonorrhea, herpes, HPV and syphilis can all pass through oral sex. They can pass from privates to the mouth or throat. They can also pass from someone’s mouth and throat to their partner’s privates.
Some STIs pass from the skin on privates to the skin inside or near a mouth. Others pass through fluids like semen or vaginal fluid.
It’s possible to pass HIV and hepatitis C through oral sex, but the risk is very low. It can only happen if there are open cuts, sores, or inflamed gums in the mouth. Basically, they need a way into your blood.
What about condoms?
Many companies sell thinner condoms. These are as effective as thicker condoms at preventing STIs. Putting some lube inside the tip of the condom can also help it feel better!
You can prevent STIs and other infections by using a new condom when you switch between oral, vaginal or anal sex.
Dental dam? What’s that?
These are rectangular pieces of latex that you put between a mouth and someone’s privates. They make a barrier that STIs can’t pass through.
You can get dental dams from some pharmacies and sex toy shops. You can also make one yourself from a condom or glove!
Like condoms, you can lower your risk for STIs and other infections by using a new dam when you switch between oral on an anus, front hole, bottom growth, strapless, or vulva.
Flavoured condoms, lube, and dams
Some people don’t like the taste of latex condoms or dental dams. They can add flavoured lube or use a flavoured condom or dental dam! Everyone likes different flavours. You can try a few and see what tastes the best!
Flavoured lube, dams or condoms can have sugar in them. Sugar can cause vaginal or anal yeast infections. The risk is low when they’re outside the body. But you can check the box before you use one for vaginal, anal, or front-hole sex!
Should I get tested?
Most people who have STIs don’t show any symptoms. Since there is a risk from oral sex, you can think about getting tested.
Before you give or get oral sex, checking for sores on the penis, vulva, or anus can lower your risk. A lot of people don’t notice this symptom.
Can I get pregnant from oral sex?
You can’t get pregnant from oral sex alone. To get pregnant, semen needs to get on or in a vagina or a front hole. Stomach acids digest any semen that someone swallows. Also, there’s no way for semen to get from your stomach to your privates.
Other tips for safer oral sex
To lower your risk of STIs, you can…
- Avoid taking semen into your mouth, swallowing it, or cumming in someone’s mouth. Some STIs have a higher risk from semen than from pre-cum. Pre-cum is the clear fluid that comes out of an erect penis.
- Avoid giving oral sex if you have a cold sore or chancre sore. Cold sores are a kind of herpes. STIs can also pass more easily when there are open sores.
- Try not to give oral sex if you have bleeding gums, tooth abscesses, or after going to the dentist.
- Wait 30 minutes after brushing your teeth before giving oral sex. Brushing your teeth can make small tears in your gums that let STIs in.
- You can make sure your vaccines are up to date and ask about any optional vaccines that might lower your risk for STIs like HPV or hepatitis A and B.
If you want fresh breath, you can chew gum or use mouthwash! To reduce the risk of yeast infections, you can use sugar-free gum.