Safe sex aids in preventing STDs

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Safe sex aids in preventing STDs

Tassy Payne, Staff Reporter

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Six boxes of Little Caesar’s Hot and Ready Pizza and Kroger’s ice tea fed the physical hunger while a discussion about safe sex fulfilled students’ sexual hunger.

IU Southeast’s Gay-Straight Alliance and sociology club sponsored their first safe sex panel Tuesday, Nov. 17. The clubs invited different panel speakers for topics like reproductive resources to use, HIV and Viral Hepatitis, consent and the rape culture, safe sex practice, and the guilt imposed on sexual activity.

Linda Wells-Freiberger, an assistant clinical professor in the nursing school, shared her presentation on how to prevent contraction of  HIV and hepatitis.  

She said that approximately one-third of individuals with HIV are  also infected with Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C and can  triple the risk for severe liver disease.  Wells-Freiberger said that 80 percent of people who have HIV and inject drugs also have Hepatitis.

She said to prevent getting HIV, students should limit the number of sexual partners, wear condoms, stop sharing needles and use new biomedical options like pre-exposure or post-exposure prophylaxis . Wells-Freiberger said that to utilize the pre-exposure or post-exposure prophylaxis, and that the person has to use the post-exposure prophylaxis within the first three days of being exposed.

To prevent viral hepatitis, Wells-Freiberger said to go over safe sex precautions with the sexual intercourse partner and to avoid contact with blood/body fluids. If a student does receive Hepatitis B or C, she said that vaccinations are available.

Taylor Ewing, an educator from Planned Parenthood in Louisville, taught students the different types of condoms and taught students how to make their own dental dams to use during sexual intercourse.

Dental dams can be used as protection while having oral sex. Dental dams are rectangular latex laid on one’s genitals or held up to someone’s mouth. She said that if a student didn’t have a dental dam, they could easily make one.

Using a male condom Ewing cut off the tip, the rim (if desired) and cut up lengthwise. It should end up being a rectangle.

Using a latex glove In a handout Ewing passed out to students, it said to cut off the middle three fingers. Then take the cut up the palm of the glove where the middle finger would be and stretch it out. It will end with a rectangle with two handles.

For more information, go to http://std.about.com/of/prevention/ht/dentaldamhowto.htm

Ewing  said that male condom, also known as the out condom, is effective 96-98 percent of the time if used properly.

The female condom, or the internal condom, is a polyurethane condom. It is effective 95 percent of the time if used properly, and 80 percent effective for typical use. She said that internal condoms could be inserted six to eight hours before having intercouse, but when having intercourse, the internal and out condom cannot be used at the same time.

Psychology senior Ryan Malone shared information on how all orientations could practice safe sex.

Malone said that everyone can practice safe sex by getting tested, asking for consent, getting to know the person students are wanting to have sex with, and having open conversation.

He said to avoid using drugs and alcohol when  having sex because it could alter your personality and decisions.

“You want to remember the person you were having sex with,” Malone said.

He also suggested that students should not “yuck somebody’s yum.” This phrase means that if one student likes one thing, the other student shouldn’t say eww, or that’s gross. Malone said to find a middle ground. He said to approach it like this,

“Hey, I know you love this, but I don’t like this. Can we find a middle ground?”

Finding a middle ground and continuing to get to know your partner better through open conversation can help prevent miscommunication and eliminate the possibility of getting raped.

Evangeline Flowers, an english major at IU Southeast, put together the presentation about rape culture however, she could not attend and Izzy Nolan, president of GSA presented on her behalf.

According to Flowers, rape is normalized today and what should be normalized is consent and its importance.

Flower said that when we demand that consent be asked for and respected we begin to dismantle rape culture.

Last, Michael Gardner, a business management and finance major shared how stigmas affect everyone. He said that the damage of guilt and stigma among people causes others to be afraid to buy condom and causes a transference of STDs and STIs. It can hurt someone both mentally and physically and cause someone to not be comfortable being open in discussion with their partner.

Gardner said that this is a societal problem. He said that the way to fix this problem is personal and that the change starts with themselves. Gardner told students to love themselves, to be honest with themselves, have fun, be open with their partners and to not be afraid to say no.

Nolan, a psychology and sociology major, said that she would love to make this an annual event. She said that next semester she would like to host a consent panel with The Dining Hall.