Most people know they should be practising “safe sex” but what about “safe oral sex”.
Gonorrhoea, chlamydia, genital herpes, genital warts and syphilis are just a few of the sexually transmitted infections that can spread through oral.
Experts stress that everyone should be using protection when performing the intimate act.
Around 70% of people view oral stimulation as “full blow sex”, according to a study a sexual research centre at the Kinsey Institute in Indiana.
In her birthday suit.
But recent research shows that people are not protecting themselves from STIs when it comes to oral.
The rate of STIs being spread through oral sex is rising, according to the British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH).
One of the biggest problems is that people who catch STIs in the mouth and throat can’t be treated in the same way.
In fact, oral is now the main cause of drug-resistant gonorrhea, because the medicine doesn’t work on the throat, meaning it remains in the mouth.
The NHS recommends everyone use a condom when performing oral sex, to prevent disease from spreading.
“Dental dams and condoms can be used as barrier methods to prevent the passing on of STIs during oral sex, and are available free via your local family planning clinic or sexual health service,” Sue Knight, lead nurse of Clinical Governance at young people’s sexual health and wellbeing charity Brook told The Independent.