The bad advice you need to question

“I heard from my second cousin’s friend that you can’t get an STD from…” This is like a terribly-played game of broken telephone – the original information may have been incorrect from the beginning, or lost down the line Minecraft 1.14.4 Shader. And, with the internet, anyone’s opinion quickly becomes fake news.

Here’s what you should know:

“Condoms will stop you from getting STDs”

You may have heard this from one of your friends, but it’s not entirely true. Condoms are highly effective at reducing – but not completely preventing – the chance of transmission of an STD. It’s vital to note that there are different degrees of protection; it depends on the type of STD that you get.

Important: Make sure you know how to put on a condom correctly before you have sex – otherwise it may slip off or even break. When used correctly, condoms are 98% effective.

“You will know if you have an STD”

No, you won’t always know; it depends on the type of STD. The Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), for example, usually doesn’t show any symptoms because you body’s immune system is able to kill the virus. The sexual partner that infected you may not even know that they have it.

However, there are warning signs that you may have an STD; these include:

  • Sores or warts on your genitals
  • Pain when you pee
  • Nausea, fatigue, fever
  • Discharge and/or odour from your genitals

If you experience any of these symptoms soon after sex, make an appointment with your doctor to get tested for an STD.

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“You can’t get pregnant while on your period”

Nope. Ladies, you can still become pregnant while you’re on your period. A menstrual cycle normally lasts 28 days, but certain women have a shorter menstrual cycle – sometimes only 22 days. This means that you may ovulate a few days after your period.

Sperm remains in your genital system for six days and so if you did have sex during your period, it is possible that the sperm will still be there when you ovulate, fertilising the egg.

“Birth control pills make you gain weight”

This is not completely accurate. Perhaps 50 years ago when birth control pills contained a lot of oestrogen, but today’s pills do not contain as much of this hormone anymore. If you do pick up a bit of weight when you start taking them, it’s usually a temporary side effect.

Generally, birth control pills will not make you gain weight; if you do pick up a few kilos, it is probably due to the type of pill that you are using. You should go and see your doctor and they will suggest a different type.

So, the next time your uncle gives you his usual “2 cents” – think twice. Rather ask one of our doctors. Just log onto the app, and text us a question. We’ll get back to you within an hour, so you can give your uncle our two cents worth!

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