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  • Writer's pictureAlana, RN

Can you prevent STDs by bathing after sex?

No. Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs), also known as Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), are infections and diseases you cannot wash off.

These different bacteria, viruses, and other tiny microbes enter your body through various places, including:

  • Mouth/Lips

  • Eyes

  • Nose

  • Ears

  • Anus

  • Genitals

Although you cannot prevent STIs by washing with soap, overall good hygiene is essential. Suppose you want to wash your genital area after having sex; either use plain water or mild, unscented, hypoallergenic soap with a soft rag and gentle motions. There is no need to use antibacterial soap, douche, or scrub hard. Those things can cause more harm than good. It is a good idea to wash your hands as well. You can use antibacterial soap on your hands to prevent you from spreading pathogens to other body parts. Douching throws off the pH balance in your vagina and increases your risk of STIs and vaginal infections. Women should also urinate after sex to help prevent UTIs (Urinary Tract Infections).

The only way to prevent STIs is to abstain from sexual activity, including oral, anal, and vaginal sex.

Untreated STDs can lead to a host of other long-term problems. Most common STIs show no symptoms initially, so it is essential to talk to your sexual partners and have regular STI testing. The best way to remain healthy is to refrain from having sex or being monogamous.

Think you have an STD/STI, get tested today!


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