National Condom Week kicks off on Valentine’s Day. Of course it does. There are endless slogans out there to promote the week (you know—Don’t be silly, protect your willy; When in doubt, shroud your spout; If you can’t shield your rocket, leave it in your pocket), but the five real reasons to cover your stump before you hump are as follows.
The statistics are clear: sexually transmitted diseases and infections are all on the rise. In its most recent report, the CDC says chlamydia is up 2.8%, gonorrhea 5.1%, and primary and secondary syphilis have jumped 15.1% (congenital syphilis is higher—27.5%). 70% of single (straight) people say their number one concern when having sex / using protection is birth control, which means they end up not using condoms if they're on the pill or using another contraceptive. But only condoms are a highly effective way to protect yourself against diseases including Zika and HIV, the virus that causes AIDs.
Studies show sex makes you happier, reduces stress and anxiety, soothes pain, helps you sleep, and is awesome for your heart. So you should have more of it. But if you have unprotected sex, all bets are off. Wrap it up.
If you want a baby, don’t wear a condom. If you don’t want a baby, wear a condom. Condoms are a great way to avoid getting pregnant. It’s pretty simple. But oddly, only 21% of single women use them and only 33% of single men use condoms regularly. More than half of pregnancies are unintended and abortion rights are consistently under attack.
We’re really geeking out on this. According to a Chinese study published in the journal PLoS One (which we read about in Women’s Health), condoms keep semen from changing a vagina’s natural pH level. This means good bacteria found in vaginas can live and let live and do its thing: protecting you from UTIs, yeast infections, and bacterial vaginosis, plus more serious conditions and diseases.
Wouldn’t it be great always rock that after sex glow? You can (kind of), but it’s going to take some effort. Research shows sex can make you look younger, improve your skin and your hair, and even strengthen your nails—as if you needed an excuse to have more sex. But if you have unprotected sex, things can get ugly real fast.
So remember—National Condom Week or any week ever: No glove, no love!