Health Tip: Be aware of your sexual and reproductive health

Did you know studies suggest that Indian adolescents and youth do not receive relevant information on sexual matters from reliable sources? Moreover, only 26% of adolescent girls know that a condom should be used only once, and only 34% understood that oral contraceptive pills must be taken daily. There is an overall lack of awareness about sexual and reproductive health in men and women alike in India, which causes lack of maturity and knowledge related to sex and contraception. Sexual health refers to the many factors that impact sexual function and reproduction. These include a variety of physical, mental and emotional factors. Disorders that affect any of these factors can impact a person’s physical and emotional health, as well as his or her relationships and self-image. Here’s more on sexually transmitted diseases: Symptoms, causes, diagnosis and treatment.

Speaking about this, Dr Hrishikesh D Pai, Director IVF & Infertility at Fortis Bloom IVF Center, Delhi & Former Secretary General of the Federation of Obstetrics and Gynaecological Societies of India, said, “Sexual health refers to avoiding infections and illnesses, and taking responsibility to ensure that we protect ourselves and others, emotionally and physically. It is integral to a person’s overall health. Lack of awareness can lead to a person being unable to understand the underlying causes of sexual disorders and seek appropriate help. One of the greatest barriers to the WHO’s vision of sexual health and promoting responsible sexual behaviour is the unwillingness of individuals to discuss their sexual problems. It is important to create awareness of the fact that sexual health issues must be addressed in a timely manner. This can be done by talking about it with a health care provider and your partner.”

Adding further, Dr Nandita Palshetkar, Director IVF & Infertility at Fortis Bloom IVF Center, Delhi & President-elect, Federation of Obstetrics and Gynaecological Societies of India said, “Of all the important consequences of poor sexual health is infertility. This is because not maintaining sexual health can lead to various diseases such as STDs which may eventually contribute to loss of fertility. Both men and women should aim at maintaining their sexual and reproductive health by highlighting any specific or unknown symptoms and address concerns at the earliest. This includes undergoing regular checkups at various stages of their life.” Also read about strange facts about sex we bet you didn’t know.

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