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Sexual Health

Symptoms, Causes, Treatments, Questions & Related Topics

6 Reasons Sexual Health is Important

1. Human experience

Sex is a part of the human experience.[1] Everything from your sexuality to relationships, your ability to reproduce, as well as your comfort with your personal and sexual desires and experiences, is covered under this umbrella. As such, your sexual health is an important part of living your day-to-day life.

2. Social interactions

Your sexual health is also part of your ability to have healthy social interactions with other people. You will want to approach the people in your life with a healthy attitude toward any sexual interactions you may have with them, as well as toward those with whom you are not having sex.[2] Being able to discuss your feelings about sex and what you want from your sex life is also crucial to healthy relationships with others.

3. Personal feelings about sex

Even if you don’t have a sexual partner, you might want to have one in the future, which is another reason why you should have a healthy outlook on sex. You should also be comfortable with your own sexuality and sexual health simply for yourself, even if another person doesn’t enter into it. Feeling comfortable with who you are and what you want from life, including sexually, is crucial to your own well-being.

4. Sexually transmitted diseases

There are certain illnesses that can only be or are highly contracted through sexual acts. These are known as sexually transmitted diseases or STDs. Having knowledge of what STDs are, how to prevent them, and how to recognize the signs and symptoms of the common STDs is essential to sexual health.

5. Reproductive health

You may or may not want to have children one day, or you may already have children and want to have more. Whatever the case, it’s important to be informed about your reproductive health and to know what risk factors, issues, and circumstances might affect yours.

6. Sexualities

Not everyone has the same sexuality or sexual preference. Different individuals might also have different risk factors or concerns based on their sexual preferences. Understanding these as well as what other people need is important to your sexual health as well as the sexual health of those with whom you interact.

Understanding Sexual Health

Many different procedures can be involved in making sure your sexual health is stable. For some, this can involve an annual trip to the doctor’s office to make sure that one’s sexual organs are functioning healthily and that there are no issues. A Pap smear and other tests may be done often, such as once a year, depending on your circumstances.[2]

Sexual health may also involve consistent testing for sexually transmitted diseases, especially if you have multiple partners. If you think you’re pregnant or are concerned that you will become pregnant, you may also want to discuss this with your doctor.

It’s important to discuss your sexual health with your doctor if you are feeling uncomfortable with sexual discussions, sexual feelings, acts, or are experiencing symptoms that point to an unhealthy physical, emotional, or mental state. These can include anything from symptoms of an STD to potentially being in an abusive relationship.

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Sexual health goes so much farther than just making sure you do not contract a sexually transmitted disease. Being able to experience pleasure, to recognize your own desires and the rights of others to have the same or different desires, and to communicate your feelings about your sexual health with those who need to know them, including your healthcare providers and/or your sexual partners, are all a part of your sexual health.[4]

Risks of Sexual Health

1. No risks

There are no risks associated with discovering, discussing, and learning about your own sexual health. If you are not educated about the needs of sexual and reproductive health, you will be much more likely to experience serious side effects, such as sexually transmitted diseases, an unwanted pregnancy, or more. Knowledge is a powerful ally when it comes to sexual health.

What to Expect with Sexual Health

1. Communicating with your healthcare providers

Discussing your sexual health should be a part of your overall medical care. You should feel comfortable discussing your desire for certain treatments, such as abortion or birth control, with your healthcare provider, as well as asking any questions necessary for your health. You should never feel judged by your healthcare worker or worry that they will share your information, which is required by law to be kept completely confidential.

2. Communicating with others

Telling people what you need and like or dislike is crucial to a healthy sexual relationship. Issues like violence, intimidation, and discrimination should never be a part of a healthy sexual relationship.[5]

3. Positive attitudes and feelings

Your sexuality and sexual health should encompass positive feelings toward yourself, your partner, and others. If you have negative feelings and attitudes, it can help you to address these with a healthcare provider, such as a doctor or therapist. There are so many options available now when it comes to reproductive decision making, medications that can boost sexual performance or desire, and other treatments for sexual health. Don’t force yourself to stay in an unhappy state when it comes to your sexual well-being.

Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Your Sexual Health

  • Are there any risk factors associated with my sexual health that I should be aware of?
  • How often should I seek out regular doctors’ appointments for my sexual health?
  • Are there any treatments for my condition?
  • How can I work on positive attitudes toward my own sexual well-being?

Sexual Health May Also be Known as:

  • Reproductive health
  • Pregnancy health
  • STD prevention
  • Sexual violence prevention
  • LGBTQ health

References

5 Sources

Solv has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We avoid using tertiary references.