5 common sex mistakes to avoid

You don't need to do a lot to have a great sex life, but you do need to watch out for these common sex mistakes.

Having sex with someone new is always a learning experience, but even lovers who’ve been together a while continue to learn and explore what makes great sex. No matter how much experience you have, many people are guilty of unknowingly making these little sex mistakes. Here’s what to look out for:

  • Not getting tested for STIs

You'd know if you had one, right? Not so fast. Some sexually transmitted infections (STIs) have mild symptoms or none at all. If you're sexually active, talk to your doctor about testing or visit a health clinic.

  • Using a condom the wrong way

Condoms help protect you from STIs and pregnancy, but only if you use them the right way. Only put a condom on an erect, or hard, penis. Pinch any air out of the end and roll it all the way down. When you're finished having sex, hold the base of the condom and pull it out.

  • Having anal sex to avoid pregnancy

Your chances of getting pregnant from anal sex are low, but it's not impossible. That's because semen can move from your anal area to the vagina. STIs are your main concern, though. Rectal tissue is thin and can tear easily, letting infection in. Use a condom every time you have anal sex. And use plenty of lube. Condoms are more likely to break during anal sex because there's less natural lubrication.

  • Not using condoms because you're symptom-free

You or your partner can have no symptoms and still have an STI. This means you can infect each other. Always use a condom during sex and get tested regularly for STIs.

  • Douching to stop pregnancy

Douching, or cleaning your vagina with water or a special solution, doesn't protect you from pregnancy or an STI. In fact, it can spread an infection to other parts of the reproductive system like your uterus and fallopian tubes. Your vagina cleans itself.

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