September is World Sexual Health Month! A critical part of our overall well-being is sexual health. This month is the perfect time to create conversation about a healthy, happy sex life and generate awareness around all components of intimate health. Here we’ll discuss a few major strides you can take toward better sexual health.
Talk to a doctor about any current sexual health issues
Many of us put off going to the doctor, or procrastinate on issues until they’ve become extremely difficult to treat. This may be due to inconvenience, financial difficulties, or even the belief that the symptoms will subside and disappear over time. However, oftentimes, common sexual issues like erectile dysfunction in men or lack of sex drive in women can be indicators of a deeper health condition, sometimes even as serious as heart disease.
If there are any sexual health issues disrupting your experience with intimacy, it’s important that you talk to a doctor to evaluate your symptoms. They will be able to determine if the issues are caused by a more serious concern or a sexual dysfunction for which they can provide treatment. For example, they can suggest a prescription to treat ED, a medication to restore female libido, or recommend a sex therapist to help you get comfortable in the bedroom. Or if it’s something else you’re concerned about with your sexual health, like if you’ve had unprotected sex previously and you’re unsure whether you might need an std blood test, it’s best to talk to your doctor and find a local testing clinic. Despite your initial hesitations, regular checkups are not only necessary, but sometimes even life-saving, so schedule a visit with your doctor this September.
Explore your sexuality
Discovering and being comfortable with your sexuality is an essential aspect of a healthy, satisfying sex life. However, external factors like societal beliefs, religion, and the media can play a huge role in making individuals insecure about their sexuality, which can distract them from a fulfilling sexual relationship.
If you’re not comfortable in your sexuality or self-image, don’t worry. Getting familiar with your body, discovering what you like, and communicating openly and honestly are good starting points when it comes to finding and embracing your own sexuality. Be open-minded, work toward a more positive attitude toward sex, and reach out if you’re struggling emotionally to discover your most natural self in the bedroom.
If you’re struggling with finding your sexuality, visit GLAAD for guidance and a list of helpful resources for all sexualities.
Learn About Sexual Rights
In order to carry out a safe, healthy sex life, it’s critical to understand sexual rights, not only for your own well-being, but your partners’ well-being as well. This knowledge encompasses any and all concepts related to sexual health– more specifically, according to the World Health Organization: consent, discrimination, and most importantly, the idea that sexual rights are equal for each and every person regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation.
Sometimes, individuals settle for substandard treatment from both their peers and strangers, whether in fear of others’ judgments, or lack of knowledge about human rights in general. Take the time to familiarize yourself with the rights you, and your sexual partners, have. Take care of yourself, and make decisions for your own body, and if you have any concerns about your sexual rights, seek out help.
Visit the Sexual Rights Initiative to learn more about your sexual rights.
This September, celebrate Sexual Health Month by raising awareness about all things sexual health. Don’t let sex become a taboo– it’s a fundamental part of our well-being. Create conversations and start making your sexual health a priority now.