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22 Feb

Myth & Facts

Myth 1: A broken hymen means a woman is not a virgin!

Once people thought that a broken hymen was proof that a woman was no longer a virgin.  Many females have stretched or broken their hymens before they become sexually active. Wearing tampons,masturbating or even exercising can break the hymen.

Myth 2:  Masturbation is something that only males do!

Many women experiment with self-love. Female masturbation is completely healthy and is considered a great way to maintain good sexual health, learn about your body and help teach your partner what feels good to you. There have been no reported cases of side effects as a result of masturbation.

Myth 3: As long as the male puts on a condom before ejaculation, you are protected from pregnancy and STIs.

It is possible to get pregnant even when ejaculation doesn't occur in the vagina because sperm may be present in the pre-ejaculation fluid (pre-cum). This pre-ejaculatory fluid can also contain an STI, and remember not all STIs are spread through bodily fluids. So protect yourself from the start - put on a condom!

Myth 4: There are only certain times of the month when a woman can get pregnant.

A woman can get pregnant anytime of the day, night, month or year. Some women have even become pregnant from having sex during their period. The easiest time to get pregnant is when a woman ovulates. This usually happens once a month. So to prevent pregnancy always use birth control.

Myth 5: All sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are contracted through bodily fluids!

As well as through exchange of fluids some STIs can be transmitted through skin on skin contact. Condoms are great for protecting against most STIs but it is important to remember that there is still a risk of getting an infection as they do not cover the whole genital area. Genital warts and genital herpes infections are often in places that condoms don't cover, but using a condom cuts down on your risks of getting an infection.

Myth 6: HIV can be transmitted through everything from body to body contact, dirty toilet seats and sharing fluids.

HIV can only be transmitted through blood, semen, vaginal fluids and breast milk.

Myth 7:  There are no emotional risks associated with sexual activity.

Becoming sexually intimate with someone makes you feel vulnerable and brings you together with them in a different kind of relationship than you have with anyone else. It is important to know, trust and communicate with your partner. You should only do what you feel comfortable doing.

Myth 8: Becoming sexually active will increase your self worth and make you more mature.

Engaging in sexual activity when you don't feel good about yourself is a bad idea. You might find yourself in situations you are not ready for, or doing things just to make the other person like you.   It is best not to even consider getting sexually active until you are happy with yourself and comfortable with your decision. There is nothing wrong with abstinence. There is nothing wrong with saying NO!

Myth 9: Having vaginal intercourse for the first time is always painful for women.

Some women find that having vaginal intercourse for the first time is painful, as the hymen may be stretched or torn during the first experience of sexual penetration and this may cause some pain. Some women find their first time painful because they weren't really ready to have sex, they haven't been properly aroused, or they don't have enough lubrication (natural vaginal mucus).  It is important to be relaxed with your partner and that you are both willing to take the time to get properly aroused before you try to have intercourse.

Myth 10: Anal sex is safer than vaginal sex because you can't get pregnant doing it!

When a man ejaculates during anal sex with a woman, some of the ejaculate may spill on the vagina and technically a woman could still get pregnant. (Note: the lining of the anus is very thin and can tear easily. This makes anal sex even more risky than vaginal intercourse because it increases the risk of getting an STI).

Myth 11: Cyber - sex is a great way to get to know someone sexually.

Cyber-sex may help you to get to know someone better without worrying about the risk of pregnancy or STIs. However, if you are communicating with a stranger, there is a chance that they are in fact a sexual predator. Never give any personal information to people you meet on the internet.

Myth 12:  You can only get one STI at a time!

If someone has one STI, they are more likely to pick up another one because the vagina or anus may be damaged by the STI, making it more susceptible to other infections. A person may think they have only one STI, when in fact they might also have another that has no symptoms. That's why it's important to get tested if you are at risk.

Myth 13:  If a condom breaks, there's nothing you can do.

A woman in such circumstances may seek emergency contraception e.g. the morning after pill. If there is a valid worry that there has been possible exposure to HIV, it may be necessary to take post exposure prophylaxis (PEP).  This is a course of HIV medication which needs to be started within 72 hours of exposure.

Myth 14: With the advances in medicine there is no need to worry about sexually transmitted infections (STIs). It only takes a course of antibiotics and you are fine, anyway!

Early detection is important, but medicines cannot cure all STIs,so prevention through safer sex is by far the best option. Bacterial sexually transmitted infections can be completely cured if they are caught at an early stage, and the treatment may be as simple as a course of antibiotics. However, if left untreated, STIs can pose a long-term risk to your health and fertility.

Antibiotics have no impact on viral infections. Genital warts and genital herpes can be treated with antiviral medications but both conditions are likely to recur.
Although antiretroviral drugs have been developed to slow the progression of HIV to AIDS, there is still no cure. Right now it's a chronic disease that for many infected people may need strict adherence to daily lifelong medication.

Myth 15: You can tell the sort of person who is likely to have an STI by what they look like- you just have to be a good judge of character!

STIs are common enough to affect anyone who is sexually active.'Gut instinct' is not a reliable way of judging the likelihood of infection from a partner. Unless you are 100% sure of your partner's sexual history, safer sex and medical tests are the only sensible solution.  You are even at risk of getting an STI from a person who has only once practiced unsafe sex.

Myth 16: You are not at risk of an STI if you are in a monogamous relationship.

Yes, this is true if the couple have never had sex or close sexual contact with anyone else before. Many of us believe that having only one partner exempts us from sexually transmitted infections, but with increased opportunities for transmission, it is very easy to 'be unlucky'. You can only be sure when neither you nor your partner has had a sexual relationship before or when you and your partner have been tested for all STIs since the beginning of your monogamous relationship.



Common Myths About Alcohol Debunked!

A lot of us try to defend our drinking habits by citing imaginary benefits of alcohol. With a lot of research that backs the ill-effects of alcohol, there are some myths about alcohol that are read true by a lot of us. Here are a few common myths about the ‘benefits’ of alcohol which are not true:


MYTH #1: Alcohol Is Not Harming You If You Are Not Getting Drunk


  FACT: This is not true. When you consume alcohol, it is absorbed into the blood stream and distributed across the body. Alcohol consumption causes both physical and emotional changes that can adversely harm your body. So in reality, alcohol tolerance is an indicator of unhealthy body and ill-health.


MYTH #2: Alcohol Lowers Cholesterol


  FACT: Though small quantities of red wine are known to improve cardiovascular health, continued drinking causes a spike in cholesterol, leading to plaque building in the arteries. Alcohol consumption in the long run, puts you at a heightened risk of heart-attacks.


MYTH #3: Alcohol Does Not Affect The Brain In the Long Run


  FACT: Recent scientific studies have shown that though alcohol causes long term damage to the brain. Additionally, it does cause temporary impairment of judgement and decision making and is the principal reason behind a majority of accident related deaths in India. Drinking may also lead to a neural disorder called neuropathy, wherein the patient suffers from sudden weakness, pain and numbness of the body.


MYTH #4: Alcohol Adds Spice To Your Sex Life


  FACT: This is not true. Studies have revealed that drinking can hinder the chances of conceiving in women. It also drastically reduces the sperm count in men. One of the most common problems among men, erectile dysfunction, is a common outcome of heavy drinking. So if you are in the habit of heavy drinking, the chances of healthy parenthood are slim.


MYTH #5: Alcohol Makes You Feel Young


  FACT: This is perhaps the most common misconception. Alcohol has been found to cause bone deterioration in adults and may lead to arthritis and osteoporosis. Moreover, while drinking, a lot of free radicals enter the bodies that cause cell damage and therefore accelerate the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on the skin.


MYTH #6: Alcohol Improves Your Immunity


  FACT: While alcohol naturally has anti-septic properties, consuming it in the form of beverages sabotage your immune system making you susceptible to diseases like tuberculosis, renal-failure and pneumonia. So, it is absolutely false to say that it improves the immunity of an individual.

So, post being informed about these myths about alcohol consumption, hope they shall serve good enough to keep you off the bar-stool and practice drinking in moderation. Stay Healthy, Stay Happy!