Common Myths And Facts About STDs
There are lot of folktales about sex and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Some of which are very confusing, in fact scary to some extent! Here are some facts that will clear all those sexual mythologies that you have been hearing all along.
Myth # 1: Herpes And Toile Seat – You Can Catch Herpes From A Toilet Seat
There is a common myth that one can contract herpes via toilet seats if used by an infected person (or other forms of physical contact). Well, this is a myth unless two people are sharing the toilet seat simultaneously and there is direct contact with sexual secretions. Herpes is a viral infection which spreads via skin to skin contact. Catching infections through toilet seat is something impossible but still if you have concerns, make sure your toilet seat is clean and dry before using it. Also, you can also get other infections such as Crabs from physical contact with toilet seat.
Myth # 2: Tattoos Or Body Piercing Are Not Related To HIV
Getting pierced or tattooed through unsterilized tools can cause HIV or hepatitis B and C (as these are blood borne infections). Tools for skin piercing or cutting should be used only once and then disposed of. Therefore, before getting piercings or tattoos you must ask the parlor about what kind of tools they are using and what necessary precautions they take. Do not get any services until or unless you are sure that sterilized and disinfected instruments are being used.
Myth # 3: Pap Test Is A STDs Test!
Many women think that Pap test is performed by doctors to detect sexually transmitted infections or diseases, which is a misconception. Pap test is not a STD test, it is done to screen cervical cancers in women of high-risk group.
Myth # 4: HIV Is Transmitted Via Mosquitoes
HIV can spread through a mosquito bite, is another myth! Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have conducted numerous studies and none of the study so far have shown any evidence that will support this mythology. HIV cannot be transmitted through mosquito or any other insect, not even in HIV prevalent places where mosquito related infections are highly prevalent.
Myth # 5: STI Cannot Be Contracted Via Oral Sex
There are some sexually transmitted infections that spreads via oral sex. For example, you can have genital herpes through oral sex, if your partner is suffering from active oral herpes (cold sore).
Myth # 6: You Can Use Oil Based Lubricant With Latex Condoms
Oil based lubricants such as Vaseline, baby oil, Crisco and hand creams should not be used with latex condoms as it can break down the latex, allowing easy spread of STIs and STDs. Use water based lubricants, for example, Glide®, K-Y Jelly®, Aqualube®. Contraceptive jellies, plain ol’ water and even saliva will do good with such condoms.
Myth # 7: You Can Reuse A Condom
No matter what, you cannot use a condom more than once!
Myth # 8: Vaginal Sex Is Enough For Female Orgasms
There are only 30% women who can have orgasm by just having vaginal sex. Most of the women will need oral stimulation or foreplay to get maximum orgasm.
Myth # 9: The Average Penis Size
There is an obsession with large sizes! “bigger the better” is the slogan followed when it comes to penile size. However, in United States, an average length of erected penis is 5-6 inches whereas the average length for a sagged penis is 1-4 inches.
- Pulerwitz, J., Amaro, H., Jong, W. D., Gortmaker, S. L., & Rudd, R. (2002). Relationship power, condom use and HIV risk among women in the USA. AIDS care, 14(6), 789-800.
- López-Medrano, F., Costa, J. R., Rodríguez-Peralto, J. L., & Aguado, J. M. (2007). An HIV-positive man with tattoo induration. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 45(2), 267-268.
- Dylewski, J. (2016). On the Origin of the Infection: The Towel Hypothesis. Infectious Diseases in Clinical Practice, 24(3), 190-191.