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Safer sex resources

  • Oral sex

    Many people enjoy giving and receiving oral sex – kissing, licking or sucking another person’s genitals.The risk of getting HIV from performing oral sex on...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • How to get PrEP in the UK

    In England, PrEP is available to people taking part in the PrEP Impact trial.In Wales and Scotland, PrEP is available through NHS sexual health clinics.It is also...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Transmission and viral load

    An undetectable viral load shows that HIV treatment is working well and that there is very little HIV in body fluids.In this situation, the risk...

    From: The basics

    Information level Level 1
  • Transmission facts

    HIV can only be passed on when one person's body fluids get inside another person. HIV can be passed on during sex without a condom,...

    From: The basics

    Information level Level 1
  • Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP)

    PrEP is highly effective in preventing the sexual transmission of HIV. For PrEP to work well, it’s important to take the pills regularly.While PrEP can...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP)

    PEP involves taking a 28-day course of anti-HIV drugs, after possible exposure to HIV.Doctors will assess your risk of HIV infection before prescribing PEP.PEP is available from...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Using anti-HIV drugs to prevent HIV

    The goal of HIV treatment is an undetectable viral load. An undetectable viral load means that your blood has a level of HIV below the level which...

    From: Booklets

    Information level Level 2
  • Condoms

    Male and female condoms provide excellent protection against HIV and most other sexually transmitted infections. To be effective, they need to be used correctly. Where possible, choose a...

    From: Booklets

    Information level Level 2
  • HIV & sex

    This booklet provides information on sexual health for people with HIV. ...

    From: Booklets

    Information level Level 2
  • HIV transmission

    The two main ways in which HIV is passed on are unprotected vaginal and anal sex.Condoms, PrEP and HIV treatment are effective ways of preventing...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Viral load and transmission – a factsheet for HIV-negative people

    People with HIV who are on treatment and have an undetectable viral load are extremely unlikely to pass on HIV.Large scientific studies have proven this.Not...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Viral load and transmission – a factsheet for people with HIV

    Effective HIV treatment reduces the amount of HIV in your body fluids.Having an undetectable viral load greatly reduces your chance of passing HIV on to...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Condoms

    Condoms protect against HIV, other sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy.Both female and male condoms are available.It’s important to follow the advice on how to use...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Sex

    Having HIV can affect people’s feelings about sex in many different ways. Some people become anxious about passing HIV on, or feel less desirable. While some people go...

    From: Booklets

    Information level Level 2
  • HIV treatment as prevention

    This briefing paper, produced by NAM for HIV Prevention England, describes the scientific evidence for HIV treatment as prevention and considers its implications for the UK....

    From: HIV prevention briefing papers

  • Post-exposure prophylaxis

    Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) has been in use, in healthcare settings, since 1988. Providing PEP after sexual exposure is more controversial....

    From: Preventing HIV

    Information level Level 4
  • Protective measures

    This section examines research on the effectiveness of a range of methods which aim to prevent HIV transmission. As well as male condoms, the section...

    From: HIV transmission & testing

    Information level Level 4

Safer sex features

Safer sex in your own words

Safer sex news from aidsmap

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Safer sex news selected from other sources

  • Why This Trans Guy Stopped Taking Daily PrEP for HIV Prevention

    JD Davids writes: "I've found myself taking PrEP for weeks or months without having any real risk of HIV, so clearly it seemed my 'seasons of risk' have changed. I take lots of meds and supplements for three autoimmune diseases and related chronic pain and fatigue -- so, I'm good with having one less pill and two less drugs in the mix. Plus, it now looks as if it will be easier than previously thought for me to get up to protective levels if I want to get back on."

    24 August 2017 | TheBody.com
  • Oral sex spreading unstoppable bacteria

    Oral sex is producing dangerous gonorrhoea and a decline in condom use is helping it to spread, the World Health Organization has said. Gonorrhoea can infect the genitals, rectum and throat, but it is the last that is most concerning health officials. Dr Wi said antibiotics could lead to bacteria in the back of the throat, including relatives of gonorrhoea, developing resistance. She said: "When you use antibiotics to treat infections like a normal sore throat, this mixes with the Neisseria species in your throat and this results in resistance."

    07 July 2017 | BBC
  • Research finds that older people’s sexual problems are being dismissed

    Older people’s sexual activity problems and desires are being dismissed by health practitioners due to their age, a new study has suggested.

    08 December 2016 | University of Manchester
  • Grindr, Largest Gay Hookup App, Adds Fields for HIV Status, Undetectable, and PrEP Use

    Grindr, a popular app for gay and bisexual men, announced today the addition of optional HIV-related fields in user profiles, such as HIV status (including undetectable), last HIV test date, and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) use.

    10 November 2016 | The Body
  • The CDC’s Gay Dance Video about HIV is Flat Out Fabulous

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has produced a music video that joyfully educates gay men about HIV prevention options. And it is foot-stomping fabulous. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_espkK-vLgc

    27 September 2016 | My Fabulous Disease
  • It’s Tough to Stop Sex, Study of U.S. AIDS Effort Shows

    Researchers have found no benefits from a decade-long attempt to curb the spread of HIV in Africa by promoting abstinence and monogamy. The U.S. has spent more than $1.4 billion since 2004 telling young people in Africa to abstain from sex before marriage and then commit to a single partner. That funding didn’t influence the number of sex partners people had, the age at which they started having sex, or teen pregnancy rates, according to a study published on Monday. See http://www.aidsmap.com/page/2949285/ for more on this issue.

    04 May 2016 | Bloomberg
  • Why a London sex clinic is taking on the dark side of internet dating

    Hook-up apps’ tumultuous crusade into the heartlands of the dating scene have been well documented, with the decline in relationship intimacy and rise in sexually transmitted infections all being attributed to their use. It’s for that reason 56 Dean Street, a Soho-based sexual health clinic which sees 13,000 patients walk through its doors each month, has developed a service designed to tackle the new problems online dating presents.

    30 March 2016 | Daily Telegraph
  • An important step toward increasing global access to next-generation female condom

    Woman’s Condom achieves WHO/UNFPA prequalification: The Woman’s Condom, a new female condom designed to be easy to use and more acceptable to women and their partners, has been prequalified by the World Health Organization (WHO)/United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). The approval marks a critical step forward in expanding options for female-initiated dual protection from pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV.

    09 March 2016 | PATH
  • How to Talk to Your Partner About Going on PrEP

    Making the PrEP decision when you are in a relationship can be especially difficult. You have to consider not only your needs and expectations, but those of your partner. Two people. Twice as many considerations.

    01 February 2016 | HIV Plus
  • Does sex education exclude young gay people?

    How can teachers deliver inclusive sex and relationships education addressing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender pupils' needs? "One of the most frequent things schools say to me is that they don't have any gay pupils," says Gavin Boyd, education equality officer for the Rainbow Project, which works to promote the health and wellbeing of gay, bisexual and non-heterosexual men in Belfast and Derry. "There's a cavalier attitude, especially among young people, that you tend not to die from Aids any more, so it's seen as a manageable condition," he explains. If young people don't have the chance to openly discuss the implications of risky behaviours, he adds, they can't make informed decisions about their sexual choices.

    19 December 2015 | The Guardian
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Our information levels explained

  • Short and simple introductions to key HIV topics, sometimes illustrated with pictures.
  • Expands on the previous level, but also written in easy-to-understand plain language.
  • More detailed information, likely to include medical and scientific language.
  • Detailed, comprehensive information, using medical and specialised language.
Community Consensus Statement on Access to HIV Treatment and its Use for Prevention

Together, we can make it happen

We can end HIV soon if people have equal access to HIV drugs as treatment and as PrEP, and have free choice over whether to take them.

Launched today, the Community Consensus Statement is a basic set of principles aimed at making sure that happens.

The Community Consensus Statement is a joint initiative of AVAC, EATG, MSMGF, GNP+, HIV i-Base, the International HIV/AIDS Alliance, ITPC and NAM/aidsmap
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This content was checked for accuracy at the time it was written. It may have been superseded by more recent developments. NAM recommends checking whether this is the most current information when making decisions that may affect your health.

NAM’s information is intended to support, rather than replace, consultation with a healthcare professional. Talk to your doctor or another member of your healthcare team for advice tailored to your situation.