STIs have tripled in people over the age of 45 in a decade - make sure you practise safe sex!
When we have unprotected sex with someone, we’re also in effect having it with all the previous partners they’ve had unprotected sex with.
A news item caught my eye recently: ‘Many over-45s ignore STI risks’. In less than a decade STIs have tripled in people over 45, and recent figures from the Health Protection Agency show that the older generation are actually taking more risks than teenagers. It seems, as we get older, we tend to believe that our chances of picking up an STI are ‘next to nothing’. How daft is that?
When we have unprotected sex with someone, we’re also in effect having it with all the previous partners they’ve had unprotected sex with. So using the ‘family tree’ principle, this means we’re sharing body fluids - and risks - with countless others. Scary. Although there’s less danger of pregnancy post-50, we still need condoms as protection against a host of sexually transmitted infections.
Chlamydia, herpes, gonorrhoea and genital warts are rife, and HIV is ever present. With an increase of 1800% in syphilis alone, we can’t carry on believing that our chances of picking up an infection are negligible.
Apologies for the lecture, but being more mature does not make us immune to infection. There’s no way of knowing someone’s sexual health from their outward appearance, so with new or multiple partners we must always practise safe sex.
Both men and women back in the dating game should be prepared and carry condoms - and never be shy about using them. As Heidi Wright, spokeswoman for the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, says “You can’t always tell who has an STI - and infections don’t discriminate on the basis of age”.
Refreshingly frank and funny, actress and presenter Julie Peasgood delivers practical information to transform your sex life. The Greatest Sex Tips in the World explores the world of eroticism, revealing secrets and techniques that will energise and enhance your enjoyment.