Thursday, July 23, 2015

Sexual Health Education

Sexual health is a state of physical, mental and social well-being in relation to sexuality. It requires a positive and respectful approach to sexuality and sexual relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination and violence. And If you have a disability and you have special requirements, or if English is not your first language, you should make arrangements in advance.

If you are unable to get to your GP or to a clinic, it may be possible for someone to visit you at home.

Who offers sexual health services and advice?
•          Contraception clinics (also known as family planning clinics)
•          Sexual health clinics
•          Sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing clinics
•          Genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinics
•          Pharmacies
•          Sexual assault referral centres
•          Young people's services
Not all service providers offer the full range of better sexual health services, and it’s always best to check what’s on offer in advance.

You can find sexual health services online. Simply enter a postcode into the find services search on this site. Each provider listed provides information about the services available, opening times and contact details.


How it works
If you visit a sexual health service for the first time, you are usually asked to fill in a form with your name and contact details. With the exception of the GP, you do not have to give your real name or tell staff who your GP is if you do not want to. You can visit any sexual health clinic, it doesn’t have to be one in your local area.

As part of your consultation you may be asked some personal questions, such as your medical and sexual history, what methods of contraception you use and other questions about your sex life and sexual partners. If you need to be tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), you may need to provide a blood or urine sample.

All information regarding your visit will be treated confidentially. This means that your personal details and any information about the tests or treatments you have received will not be shared with anyone outside the sexual health service without your permission. This includes your GP.
If you are under 16 years of age, your details will still be treated confidentially and no-one in your household will be contacted without your permission. However, staff may encourage you to talk to your parents, guardian or another trusted adult.

Other services may need to be contacted if healthcare professionals believe that you or another person is at risk of harm, such as physical or sexual abuse. However, if this is the case, it will be discussed with you during your visit.

If you have been sexually assaulted you may be offered a more specialist service. They can also help you report the assault to the police, if you choose to.

It’s fine to take a friend with you for support. If you need to have an examination, you should be offered a chaperone. This means that someone else can be with you when you have the examination.

The Top 11 Health Benefits of Sex

Regular sex cannot be underestimated as a factor for reducing stress, bolstering self-esteem and fostering feelings of intimacy and bonding between partners.
But the real point of this article is the fact that a healthy sex life can provide for a longer, healthier and, most would agree, more enjoyable life. Among the many health benefits of sex are:

1. Improved Immunity
People who have sex frequently (one or two times a week) have significantly higher levels of immunoglobulin A (IgA). Your IgA immune system is your body's first line of defense.
Its job is to fight off invading organisms at their entry points, reducing or even eliminating the need for activation of your body's immune system. This may explain why people who have sex frequently also take fewer sick days.

2. Heart to Health
Men who made love regularly (at least twice a week) were 45 percent less likely to develop heart disease than those who did so once a month or less, according to one study.
Sexual activity not only provides many of the same benefits to your heart as exercise but also keeps levels of estrogen and testosterone in balance, which is important for heart health.

3. Lower Blood Pressure
Sexual activity, and specifically intercourse, is linked to better stress response and lower blood pressure.

4. It's a Form of Exercise
Sex helps to boost your heart rate, burn calories and strengthen muscles, just like exercise. In fact, research recently revealed that sex burns about 4 calories a minute for men and 3 for women, making it (at times) a 'significant' form of exercise. It can even help you to maintain your flexibility and balance.

5. Pain Relief
Sexual activity releases pain-reducing hormones and has been found to help reduce or block back and leg pain, as well as pain from menstrual cramps, arthritis and headaches. One study even found that sexual activity can lead to partial or complete relief of headache in some migraine and cluster-headache patients.

6. May Help Reduce Risk of Prostate Cancer
Research has shown that men who ejaculate at least 21 times a month (during sex or masturbation) have a lower risk of prostate cancer. This link needs to be explored further, however, as there may have been additional factors involved in the association.

7. Improve Sleep
After sex, the relaxation-inducing hormone prolactin is released, which may help you to nod off more quickly. The "love hormone" oxytocin, released during orgasm, also promotes sleep.

8. Stress Relief
Sex triggers your body to release its natural feel-good chemicals, helping to ease stress and boost pleasure, calm and self-esteem. Research also shows that those who have sexual intercourse responded better when subjected to stressful situations like speaking in public.

9. Boost Your Libido
The more often you have sex, the more likely you are to want to keep doing it. There's a mental connection there but also a physical one, particularly for women. More frequent sex helps to increase vaginal lubrication, blood flow and elasticity, which in turn make sexual activity more enjoyable.

10. Improved Bladder Control in Women
Intercourse helps to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, which contract during orgasm. This can help women to improve their bladder control and avoid incontinence. You can boost this benefit even more by practicing Kegel exercises during sex (a Kegel squeeze is performed by drawing your lower pelvic muscles up and holding them up high and tight, as if you're trying to stop a flow of urine).

Goals of Sexual Health Education
The overall goal of health education is to foster the growth of knowledge, attitudes, skills and lifelong behaviours that will enable the individual to assume responsibility for healthy living and personal well being. This can treat impotent as well.

In order to achieve this goal it is expected that Health Education programs strive toward:
Ø  Building self-confidence in individuals;
Ø  Developing positive relationships with others;
Ø  Providing a safe environment in which students feel free to discuss related topics;
Ø  Promoting individual responsibility for well-being;
Ø  Actively involving the student in the learning process;
Ø  Teaching life skills that will enable individuals to make responsible choices and to deal more effectively with the challenges they may encounter throughout their lives.

Comprehensive Sexual Health Education
Effective sexual health education needs to emphasize the shared responsibility of parents, peers, places of worship, schools, health care systems, governments, the media and a variety of other institutions and agencies. The principle of comprehensiveness emphasizes that programs are:
Full Information (All subject areas pertinent to sexual health are addressed in a way that is both culturally appropriate and reflects different social situations with the intent of reaching the widest possible audience.)

•          Integrated (Learning in formal settings, such as schools, community health care centres, and social service agencies is complemented and reinforced by education acquired in informal settings through parents, families, friends, the media and other sources.)

•          Coordinated (The various sources of sexual health education work collaboratively with each other and with related health, clinical and social services to enhance the impact of the education.)

•          Evidence Based (Planning occurs in collaboration with intended audiences, is based on research, and is evaluated on program objectives and participant feedback, updated regularly, and reinforced by an environment conducive to sexual health.).

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Causes of Poor Sexual Performance

A sexual performance can be affected by many factors. Some of the common causes that decrease your sexual performance are pregnancy, illness and menopause. Many medications such as anti-depressants, anti-seizure medications and anti-arrhythmic drugs affect the sexual drive. Hypoactive sexual desire disorder and sexual performance anxiety are few disorders that are related to fluctuations in sexual desire.  

Sex is not just a physical response but your mind also plays an important role in the sexual drive for example arousal is tied into your emotions so a healthy mind will boost your sex drives. You will not be able to enjoy sex if you are too stressed out or unable to focus on sex.

Almost 1 in 5 men experience decreased libido at some point in their life. Females are also not immune. Some of the most important causes of decreased libido are stress, anxiety, pregnancy, childbirth and breast feeding. These causes are usually temporary however, a long term unexpected lack of libido may be caused by some health related issues which can be upsetting for both partners.

Causes of decreased sexual performance:
  •       Stress
Stress and anxiety have a bad impact on your sexual life. You should consult your GP and make some lifestyle changes if you are constantly tired or anxious.
  •       Depression:
Depression can be a serious disorder if left untreated. Depression is characterized by the absence of pleasure in life, extreme sadness, weight changes, hopelessness and sleep fluctuations. The symptoms of depression severely affect your daily life routine which also includes your sex life.  Don’t just start taking anti-depressants without consulting your doctor because decreased libido is a side effect of many anti-depressants.
  •       Alcohol:
Excess utilization of alcohol can also reduce your sexual performance so it is a good idea to limit your alcohol intake.
  •       Age:
You may feel loss of interest in sex as you get older. It is due to the falling sex hormone level or age related health disorders. Men usually experience low testosterone level as they get older. Estrogen in female begins to fall as they approach menopause.  
  •        Hormonal Problems:
Some of the hormones such as thyroid hormone are also associated with reduced sexual performance. Low levels of thyroid hormone or high prolactin levels have a negative effect on your health.
  •       Contraception:
Long term use of hormonal contraceptives also reduces sex drive. These contraceptives include vaginal ring, contraception patch, OCP and progesterone only pills.
  •     Lack of sleep:
A good night sleep is necessary to keep your mind and body healthy. Lack of sleep increases cortisol level which decreases libido.