College is a place where many students choose to explore their sexuality. Students can do this safely by following these tips.

Get tested.

  • Protect your sexual health by getting tested for STDs annually or even more frequently. Most schools offer these tests for free or at a low cost, so all students, even those with small incomes, can afford the tests.

Always use protection.

  • Unless you are in a long-term, monogamous relationship with a partner who has been confirmed STD-free, always make sure to use protection to prevent the risk of contracting a disease.

Discuss issues with your partner.

  • Sex shouldn’t be painful or scary. If you are nervous or uncomfortable with any element of your sexual relationship, make sure to bring these things up with your partner or health care provider to ensure things are emotionally and physically ok.

Get regular exams.

  • Whether you’re male or female, getting your equipment checked out regularly is a must. Women can get breast exams and pap smears that can greatly reduce their risk of cancer.

Take advantage of vaccinations.

  • Many schools now offer the HPV vaccination. Female students can take advantage of these to reduce their chance of contracting the HPV virus, the leading cause of almost all cervical cancers.

Attend informational classes.

  • Most colleges offer classes that discuss sexual issues, so you can educate yourself and learn to stay healthy and happy.

Find someone to talk to.

  • Many students in college have questions about their sexuality and some even feel confused. It helps to find someone you can trust to talk to in order to help you find some direction and figure out who you really are.

Don’t do anything you’re not comfortable with.

  • While you may feel pressure from a partner or even those around you to engage in certain sexual activities, never do anything you aren’t completely comfortable with. It’s your body and you are in charge, don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise.