Sexually transmitted infections

What is an STI?

A sexually transmitted infection (STI), is basically any kind of bacterial or viral infection that can be passed on through unprotected sexual contact. It doesn’t matter how many times you’ve had sex or how many partners you’ve had; anyone can get an STI.

Protection from STIs

  • Use male or female condoms every time you have vaginal or anal sex.
  • If you have oral sex, cover the penis with a condom or the female genitals and male or female anus with a latex or polyurethane square.
  • If you are not sure how to use condoms correctly see our information on external condoms and internal condoms.
  • Avoid sharing sex toys. If you do share them, wash them or cover them with a new condom before anyone else uses them.

Worried you might have an STI and want help/advice?

 

Below are some common STI symptoms:
  • Unusual Discharge
  • Stinging, tingling, burning or itching
  • Painful swelling of penis, testicles or foreskin
  • Soreness or swelling of the vagina
  • Pain, burning or increase in your weeing
  • Irregular bleeding
  • Pain or tenderness in the lower abdomen
  • Pain or bleeding during sex
  • A strong, unpleasant smell from vagina after sex
  • Blisters or sores
  • Black powder in your underwear
  • Brown eggs on pubic or other body hair
  • Sky-blue spots or very tiny specks of blood on the skin
Finding help/advice

To find a sexual health clinic or other type of sexual service please user the following link which will take you to the NHS website where you can find the services near you. 

Here are direct links to sexual services websites across the region: 

 

Get a free chlamydia test

You can get a free, confidential chlamydia test at:

  • a sexual health clinic
  • a genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinic
  • your GP surgery
  • most contraceptive clinics

You can go to whichever place is the most comfortable and convenient for you.

Find your local sexual health clinic here.

Where can I find more information?

 
Brook

Healthy lives for young people

Brook operates a number of sexual health and wellbeing services across the UK they are committed to supporting young people. 

Here's what they can tell you about STIs.

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Sexwise

Let's talk about sex!

Sexwise is run by the national sexual health charity FPA and they can give you honest and informed advice about contraception, pregnancy, STIs, and pleasure. 

Find out more about about about STIs symptoms, treatment and how to protect yourself by visiting their website here.

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