April is Sexually Transmitted Disease Awareness Month. Know the Facts. Stay Healthy.

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April is Sexually Transmitted Disease Awareness Month, so it’s the perfect time to examine what role your personal lubricant plays in minimizing the risk of acquiring or spreading an STD.

Condoms are the most common, well-known, and effective way of protecting yourself against sexually transmitted diseases. However, there are a few things that must be taken in to consideration:

  1. Condoms can break. Using a personal lubricant with a condom significantly reduces any friction between the condom and skin, making it less likely that the condom will break. Putting a small drop of lubricant both inside and outside of the condom will make the sex feel better and wetter, but more importantly, it will make the sex safer. Always wear a condom and always use a condom-compatible lubricant.
  2. Osmolality Matters. Osmolality is a measure of the number of concentrated dissolved particles (salt and sugars) found inside a cell, relative to the outside. The higher the osmolality, the higher the risk of damaging cells around the areas it’s applied. Using a lubricant high in osmolality increases your risk of tearing or damaging tissue in the vaginal and anal regions, thus increasing your risk of contracting a disease. Fortunately, a 2010 Microbicides Building Bridges in HIV Prevention Report stated that Wet® Platinum® Premium Lubricant was one of the two safest lubricants it tested, because of its low osmolality, neutral pH and viscosity. “The hyperosmolar nature of the other lubricants,” the report said, “was associated with cellular toxicity and may lead to increased risk of HIV infection.” Not only is Wet® Platinum® a great condom compatible lubricant, it’s a safer choice.
  3. Know Your Diseases. Knowledge is power. Not all STD’s can be prevented by using a condom. The eight most common STD’s are Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Hepatitis B, Herpes Simplex Virus 2, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), Syphilis and Trichomoniasis. Of those eight, HPV and Herpes can both be transmitted by skin-to-skin contact, which means a condom won’t help. For Hepatitis B, there is a vaccine available to prevent infection, which is far more effective than a condom would be. Knowing how sexually transmitted diseases present themselves, are passed on and how to prevent and treat them are all the first steps in maintaining good health, and raising awareness not only for yourself, but also for your partner(s).

For more information on Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Infections, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at: CDC Facts about Sexually Transmitted Diseases.

By: Kylene Wolfstein, Blogger for Wet Lubricants

There are 20 million new sexually transmitted infections (STIs) each year. Photo of concerned young man. April is STD Awareness Month.
A range of unique factors place youth at risk for infection. Many young women don’t receive the chlamydia screening CDC recommends. Many youth are reluctant to disclose risk behaviors to doctors. Young women’s bodies are biologically more susceptible to sexually transmitted infections. Youth often lack insurance or transportation needed to access prevention services. And many young people have multiple partners which increases STI risk.Young people account for a substantial proportion of new STIs. Americans ages 15 to 24 account for 70% of the 820,000 gonorrhea infections among all ages; 63% of the 2.9 million chlamydia infections among all ages; 49% of the 14.1 million HPV infections among all ages; 45% of the 776,000 genital herpes infections among all ages; and 20% of the 55,400 syphilis infections among all ages. Finally, Americans ages 13 to 24 account for 26% of the 47,500 HIV infections among all ages.Banner for STD Awareness Month 2015

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