Sea, sun, sex and STDs
Summer holidays are the one time of year we can completely relax, enjoy ourselves and disconnect from the stress of work. With so many Brits enjoying themselves abroad, it’s no wonder that sexual activity naturally increases during the summer. A behavioural study found that over half of tourists visiting Ibiza have sex with at least one person, plus 26.6% of men and 14.5% of women having sex with more than one person.
However, studies have revealed that a huge number of young Brits visiting international nightlife resorts like Magaluf and engage in unprotected sex while on holiday. It’s not just teenagers either, away from home for the first time. A recent article by The Global Post reported that one in five women under 30 plan on having unprotected sex while on holiday. The article also reports that women aged between 30 and 40 are the most likely to catch an STD and the average single woman has had unsafe sex 11 times with four different men.
This is scary data when you consider how serious STDs like Aids and herpes can be, not to mention the chance of an unwanted pregnancy.
On holiday, both men and women want to let their hair down and for British holidaymakers, this often involves copious amounts of alcohol. Being drunk is often blamed for someone’s decision (or rather their lack of decision) to use protection.
The rise of binge drinking is associated with the dramatic increased in STDs in the UK, plus the number of teenage pregnancies in the UK is now much higher than in the rest of Western Europe. The number of patients with chlamydia has doubled since 1999 and since then the number of new cases of genital warts in UK GUM clinics has increased by 30%. In recent years the number of syphilis cases has also risen – in 2008 there were 11 times as many cases as there were in 1999 and the number of HIV cases has more than doubled since 1999. (Statistics from avert.org)
Everybody understands that young people want to enjoy their holiday and let themselves go, but it’s important to always use a condom. The implications of unprotected sex are just too serious to ignore and catching herpes or genital warts will ruin an otherwise fun holiday.
f a condom splits during sex, returning tourists must get tested as soon as they get back home in order to get treated as soon as possible. Many STI’s are symptomless (for example chlamydia) or their symptoms do not appear immediately, so people frequently don’t realise they have contracted an infection. Therefore, it is imperative to talk to your doctor and get tested if you have had unprotected sex or in the event of a split condom.