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Teens: Make Healthy Decisions about Sex

By HERWriter
 
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teenagers can choose wisely regarding sex Digital Vision/Thinkstock

Deciding to have sex is a serious decision. It involves both your body and your emotions, wrote Boston’s Children Hospital. There are many things to consider so you know you’re making the right decision.

The NSW Ministry of Health (NSW Ministry) said making the decision to have sex isn’t always an easy or straightforward process. Sometimes talking with friends and family can help.

Your body may send signals that seem to say you're ready for sex. That's natural, wrote the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). But your beliefs, values and emotions are just as important.

Abstinence is an important option. HealthyChildren.org reported that half of all teens say “no” to sex. There’s nothing wrong with deciding to wait.

NSW Ministry advised communicating with your partner. This allows you to confirm if having sex is what you both want. Be clear and honest when expressing your wants and desires.

You should never feel pressured to have sex. Your partner needs to respect your decision, wrote NSW Ministry. If they don't, then you need to question how much they value you and your beliefs.

Sex also has emotional risks. HealthyChildren.org said that you may feel angry or sad if you’re pressured to have sex before you’re ready.

You may also feel angry or sad if you choose to have sex and your partner breaks up with you. Your partner may even tell other people you had sex. Can you handle that?

HealthyChildren.org cautioned teens to stay away from situations that can lead to unplanned sex. Too many young people have unplanned sex when they drink alcohol or use drugs.

Potential health risks associated with having sex include pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as herpes, chlamydia, genital warts, gonorrhea, syphilis and HIV, wrote AAFP.

It’s also important to talk with your partner about their sexual history and if they have had any STIs, said Boston’s Children Hospital. In addition, discuss what STI prevention methods you plan to use.

Be open and honest if you or your partner will be sexually involved with other people. That increases the risk of contracting an STI.

Sex can lead to pregnancy.

Add a Comment2 Comments

EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

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October 8, 2012 - 11:50am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

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September 20, 2012 - 8:39pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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