Let’s say you are going to Student Health or your private caregiver. In most cases, they are going to ask you a few questions about your sexual health and sexual practices. These questions are very personal, but they are as important as the questions about other areas of physical and mental health. Your answers are kept in strict confidence.
So, are you ready to talk about your five P’s? The five “P”s stand for Partners, Practices, Protection from STDs, Past history of STDs, and Prevention of pregnancy.
- Are you currently sexually active? (Are you having sex?)
- In the past 12 months, how many sex partners have you had?
- Are your sex partners men, women, or both?
- What kind of sexual contact do you have or have you had?
- Genital (penis in the vagina), Anal (penis in the anus), Oral (mouth on penis, vagina, or anus)?
Protection from STDs
- Do you and your partner(s) use any protection against STDs? If not, why? If so, what kind”
- How often do you use this protection? If “sometimes,” in what situations or with whom do you use protection?
- Are there other forms of protection that you would like to discuss today?
Past history of STD’s
- Have you ever been diagnosed with an STD?
- Have you had any recurring symptoms or diagnoses?
- Have you ever been tested for HIV, or other STDs? Would you like to be tested?
- Has your current partner or any former partners ever been diagnosed or treated for an STD?
Prevention of pregnancy (Based on partners noted earlier, conception and contraception questions may be appropriate)
- Are you currently trying to conceive or father a child?
- Are you concerned about getting pregnant or getting your partner pregnant?
- Are you using contraception or practicing any form of birth control?
- Do you need any information on birth control?
Finally, before you move on to discuss other things with your caregiver, consider:
- Are there other things about your sexual health and sexual practices that you should discuss to help ensure your good health?
- Any other concerns or questions regarding sexual health in general?
Roger Miller, MD (OSU Student Health)