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Summer Loving: Safety Tips From Your Doc

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Jun 19, 2014 —  If you’re preparing for an amazing summer holiday to Ibiza, a killer music festival in Europe, or other travel destinations abroad you are likely to end up “between the sheets” with some new friends. However, your doctor may have some advice for you before you start behaving like a rabbit.

Sexual activity naturally increases over the summer and whilst time off work/school should be enjoyed to the full extent, it is important to do so in a safe manner. However, how do Brits go about having fun during their holidays abroad?

In one online journal on sexually transmitted infections, research on adolescent sexual health of British visitors to Ibiza was carried out in order to discover more about their habits and the complications of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) resulting from young people going abroad and having a little too much fun. Substantial amounts of people travel to nightlife resorts and have unprotected sex with strangers while abroad.   

According to this study, over half of the people (56%) who visit Ibiza have had sex with at least one person (i.e. they had sex with one or more sexual partners throughout their stay in Ibiza). 14.5% of females and 26.2% of males had sex with more than one individual. The number of people who have unprotected sex whilst abroad is growing and is particularly worrying. What is even more alarming is that quite a big percentage of tourists actually plan to have unprotected sex; according to an article published on Globalpost.com, 13% of women in their 30s are said to be planning to have unprotected sex on their summer holiday which is a surprisingly large amount.

In the UK, the presence of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) has risen in recent years. The most common STDs amongst young people in the UK are Chlamydia and genital warts. This has been accompanied by high levels of teenage pregnancies and the numbers are substantially higher than those in most Western European countries. Young people between the ages of 16-24 are said to be more at risk of catching and being diagnosed with an STD.

Whilst enjoying the holidays is important, people who intend to travel abroad this summer with hopes of sparking up a summer romance should make sure to carry protection so that they can enjoy their holidays to the fullest without fear of catching a STI. Of course, sometimes everyone can do what they are supposed to and something could still go wrong. If an incident like this happens, such as the condom splitting, tourists who return to the UK should get themselves tested in order to treat any infection as soon as possible.

Once you return from holidays, you should talk to your GP for professional guidance and to arrange to get tested as soon as possible. Alternatively, you could turn to an online service such as the Superdrug Online Doctor which offers test kits for the most common STIs. Diagnosing an STI as soon as possible is very important, as the sooner it is diagnosed, the sooner your GP can help you to overcome it with the right treatment.

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