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  • What is sex?
    Sex refers to the physical activity between people who use words or touch to arouse themselves and/or each other. Often when people say ‘sex’ they are referring to sexual intercourse, which is the penetration of the vagina by the penis. However, sex can also refer to oral sex, which is sex using your mouth, lips or tongue to stimulate your partner’s genital or anus, anal sex, which is when a penis, or object, enters a person’s anus (bottom). Fingering or hand jobs, which is hand to genital contact, or use of a sex toy can also be called manual sex. Consent from every person involved is always required when engaging in sexual activity.
  • Does vaginal sex hurt?
    Some people experience pain the first time that they have vaginal intercourse (penis in vagina sex). However, pain during or after vaginal sex is not considered normal and could be a sign of a bigger problem. Painful sex in women could be a result of an infection (such as thrush or an STI), lack of sexual arousal (the vagina has not been lubricated enough before the penis has entered), vaginismus (a condition where the muscles around the vagina contract) or a number of other causes. Sex can be painful for men because of infections (such as thrush or an STI), a tight foreskin, small tears in the foreskin, prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate gland) or a number of other causes. If you are finding sex painful, speak to a health professional (midwife, nurse, doctor) as it could be a sign of a more serious condition. Steps can be taken to resolve this issue.
  • Is it normal to not enjoy sex?
    How people feel about sex can vary greatly. Some people have low sex drives and so don’t feel a need or want to have regular sexual activity; however, others may have higher sex drives and feel like they need to have sexual activity more regularly. There are also people who are asexual, which means that they have little to no interest or desire for sexual activity. However, if you do feel like you have an interest or desire for sexual activity and are not enjoying it, it is important to think about why that might be. It could be for a number of reasons: You don’t feel comfortable with your sexual partner You don’t feel comfortable in the setting that you are trying to have sexual activity in You are feeling stressed You’re not sure what feels good for you and your body Your partner does not know what feels good for you and your body And so much more! If you feel you need additional support to work out why you are not enjoying intercourse, speak to a health professional such as a midwife, nurse or doctor. They will be able to assist you further. Once you have worked out why you are not enjoying sex, it could be multiple reasons, it is important to communicate them with your sexual partner. Everyone deserves to enjoy sex and so it is important that you are able to communicate your wants and needs appropriately.
  • What is consent?
    Consent is when you give permission for something to happen. Consent is required in all sorts of daily tasks, not just when talking about sexual activity.
  • How do I know if I have someone’s consent?
    The only way to know if someone is consenting is to ask them directly and in a way that there is no pressure on them to lie. Think FRIES. Freely Given - everyone has the freedom to say yes or no. There is no pressure, force or coercion. Reversible - anyone can change their mind at any point in time - even if they are in the middle of the sexual act. Informed - everyone involved needs to be fully away of what exactly they are saying yes or no to Enthusiastic - everyone involved should be excited and interested in what is happening Specific - each individual sexual act requires consent every time, even if you have done it before.
  • What happens if someone does something without my consent?
    If someone does something without your consent or permission, it is illegal. You can report this person to a trusted adult or the local authorities (police, social services, 116 childline).
  • Do I have to give consent to have sex with my boyfriend/girlfriend?
    Yes. Every time you engage in sexual activity with someone, you need to be sure that they are consenting. Remember, consent is freely given, can be taken away at any time and needs to be an informed decision on exactly what is going to happen.
  • I felt bad and so did something I didn’t want to do, is that consent?
    No, that isn’t consent. If you don’t want to do something, but do it because you feel guilty, bad or sorry for that person, then that is not consent. Consent needs to be enthusiastic and freely given (the person doesn’t feel pressured in any way).
  • How can I say no?
    The three part no is a great way to practice saying no before it gets to a moment where you are struggling to say no. Say ‘no’ loud and clear Confident strong body language A stern unsmiling facial expression However, we know that it can also be difficult to say ‘no’ directly and if it means keeping you safe, tell a small lie to help yourself get out of that dangerous situation into a safe one.
  • I changed my mind as we were doing something I said yes to, how do I tell my partner?
    It should be as simple as ‘Stop’, ‘No’, ‘I’ve changed my mind’. Your partner should understand how you are feeling and want to please you and make you feel safe and comfortable. If they don’t, be forceful with your ‘no’ and, if needed to make yourself safe, tell a small lie. If your partner is regularly making you feel like you can’t say no or change your mind, it may be important to take a moment and think about whether your relationship is consensual (you both make sure you are acting with consent) and it might be best to remove yourself in order to feel safe.
  • What is HIV?
    Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system. Your immune system is made up of cells that help your body fight off infections and diseases. When your immune system is attacked, you are more likely to get seriously ill from infections and diseases because there is no way for your body to combat them. Once you have HIV, the human body can’t get rid of it. However, there are medications that can mean that you can live a long life with HIV.
  • How do you get HIV?
    HIV is spread through bodily fluids, most commonly during unprotected vagina lor anal sex (sex without a condom), or through sharing injection equipment. Other ways of getting HIV include transmission from mother to baby during pregnancy, birth or breastfeeding.
  • If you think you might have HIV
    Go and get tested as soon as possible. The quicker HIV is detected, the quicker treatment can begin. If HIV is not treated, it can lead to AIDS. for more information on where to get tested and the testing process. If you’re living with HIV, taking effective HIV treatment and your condition is being well monitored and controlled, this significantly reduces your risk of passing HIV on to others.
  • What is AIDS?
    AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. It cannot be passed from one person to another but is caused by HIV being left untreated. People with AIDS have severely compromised immune systems and are highly vulnerable to falling seriously ill from usually treatable infections and diseases.
  • How to prevent HIV:
    Use a condom for sex If you use drugs, never share needles or other injecting equipment (syringes, spoons, swabs etc) If you believe you’ve been exposed to HIV or are at risk of contracting HIV, you can visit the CDCU (Yellow Roof) or any health professional to speak about your concerns. They may able to provide you with Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) treatment It is highly recommended that you get an HIV test once a year or more frequently if your partner is having intercourse with others or each time you change sexual partners.
  • What are the recent statistics of HIV in Seychelles?
    In 2021, 1 girl under the age of 14, 1 teenage boy, 4 teenage girls aged 14+ and 53 adults tested positive for HIV.
  • What is an STD?
    An STD is a sexually transmitted disease - these are diseases and infections spread through sexual activity. There are many different types of STDs with each STD affecting people in different ways.
  • How do I avoid getting an STD?
    Be sexually inactive (don’t take part in any sexual activity with another person) Wear a condom during sexual activities (including oral sex) Before having unprotected sex, both you and your partner should be tested for STDs
  • If they wash themselves or haven’t been with another partner since we met, will that prevent me from getting an STD?
    The only effective method to prevent the spread of STDs is through the consistent use of condoms correctly. Simply washing any area of your body will not get rid of any STD as they do not work the same way as germs on your hands do. Similarly, waiting a certain period of time before having unprotected sex does not mean you are safe from STDs. Some STDs, especially left untreated, can be transferable for the rest of that person’s life. Most STDs do not go away on their own and so require some medical treatment.
  • What is syphilis?
    Syphilis is a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) which can be spread from person to person by direct contact with a syphilitic sore (chancre) including vaginal, anal or oral sex or infected blood. It is difficult to notice because the symptoms are often mild but, if left untreated, it can cause life-threatening illnesses. Some common symptoms include: Sores on your penis, vagina, anus, mouth, lips or hands Non-itchy rash on palms of hands or soles of the feet White or grey warty growths most commonly on your penis, vagina or around your bottom Flu-like symptoms Swollen glands White patches in your mouth These symptoms may not show up immediately and can appear between 10 to 90 days after acquisition. Symptoms can change over time or disappear altogether - this does not mean that syphilis has gone away, it still requires medical treatment.
  • If you think you might have Syphilis:
    Go and get tested as soon as possible. The quicker Syphilis is detected, the quicker treatment can begin. If you believe you’ve been exposed to Syphilis you can visit the CDCU (Yellow Roof) or any health professional to speak about your concerns. They can test you and provide results immediately. You may also be tested for other STDs at the same time.
  • How do you treat syphilis? 
    Syphilis is treated with antibiotics, it doesn’t just go away naturally. Therefore, it is really important to go and see the doctor if you think you may have syphilis and you should not have sex until all treatment is finished.
  • What to do if I think I have an STD?
    Do not have unprotected sex (sex without a condom) Go and get tested at CDCU (Yellow Roof), any health clinic or Seychelles Hospital (free) or there are private clinics which also provide comprehensive STD testing for a fee Make sure to take any treatment that you are given to completion (do not have unprotected sex until all treatment has concluded) It is highly recommended that you get an STD test once a year or more frequently if your partner is having intercourse with others or each time you change sexual partners.
  • What are the recent statistics of Syphilis in Seychelles?
    Between 2015 and 2021, the average number of Syphilis cases in Seychelles was 3 per year. In 2022, 71 confirmed cases of Syphilis were reported in Seychelles. For January and February 2023, 7 teenagers tested positive for Syphilis. For January 2023, 71 adults tested positive for Syphilis
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