Wellness Programs

You Asked...We Answered --  

Sexual Responsibility Questions Answered

The questions that are included below are those that have been submitted to the Wellness Programs office anonymously. We answer these questions both on our website and some select questions in our newsletters.

 

Question: I want to get access to birth control other than condoms. Where can I get the pill or other birth control options?
 
That is a great question. Within Wellness Programs, the only kind of birth control we offer is condoms (male and female). Fortunately, Health Services (also conveniently located on campus on Luther Street) is able to prescribe contraceptives and emergency contraceptive (morning after pill). You can call and make an appointment with Health Services at 805.493.3225.
 
Another local resource is Planned Parenthood, conveniently located on Hillcrest Drive in Thousand Oaks. Here, you can apply for free birth control methods including the pill, shot, condoms, IUDs and more. You can make an appointment by going to <http://www.ppsbvslo.com>  or calling 888.898.3806.
 
Keep in mind; you can always talk to your regular doctor about starting a birth control method as well.  
 
**Note: Emergency Contraceptive (Morning after pill) is not a form of birth control. It should only be used in case of emergencies.**

A couple of days ago, I found a bump near my vagina. It was sore and red and in the middle it was purple. As I pressed it, puss came out and now it is nearly gone. I do not know what it is and I was wondering if Wellness may know.

Thanks for sending in this question. Although we are not medical professionals here in Wellness Programs, nor have we have any official medical training, we can try to help you the best we can. However, with that said, we do and always will suggest that you visit your medical professional, like Health Services here on campus, if you have any speicifc medical concerns such as this.

When reading your question, it seems as though you're worried you may have an STI or other infection. However the first STIs that popped into our head didn't have similar symptoms. For example, according to Planned Parenthood:

Gentials Warts may have these common symptoms and signs:
Common genital warts symptoms are flesh-colored, soft-to-the-touch bumps on the skin that may look like the surface of a cauliflower. They often grow in more than one place and may cluster in large masses. Genital warts usually are painless, but they may itch.You might see or feel genital warts in your vagina or on your vulva, cervix, penis, anus, or uretha.

Genital Herpes may includes these common symptoms and signs:
The most common herpes symptom is a cluster of blistery sores — usually on the vagina, vulva, cervix, penis, buttocks, or anus. Symptoms may last several weeks and go away. They may return in weeks, months, or years.

Since we have not seen the sore you are describing, and although your description is vivid, it is hard to tell what something is without an exam or specific test. However, we did want to be sure that we passed along that it isn't uncommon to get acne in what may seem like an odd location. Sporadic acne on the buttocks or genital area isn't uncommon. The fact that puss was coming out of the sore and that it is nearly gone now that the puss is out, makes us think that it doesn't sound like a typical Herpes or Gential Warts symtpoms, however, with that said, we would like to stress again that it is a good idea to visit a medical professional to get more answers. We suggest that you watch it, see if any other sores pop up and watch the sore that looked as though it was almost gone. If you're sexually active, we suggest that you tell your partner, and stop sexual activity until the sore is completely gone. Getting tested to be even more certain for your and your partner's sake would be recommended. As a reminder, a visit to Health Services here on campus will cost $10. Well worth it if you ask us!

I’ve been sexually active for a few months now, but I’m worried I’m not using the condom correctly. Any tips on the right way I should be using one?

We’ve got just what you need… follow these simple steps, and you’re good to go! Just remember, any method of birth control, including condoms is only as effective as the person using it makes it– the key is consistency. By using a condom every time you have sex your chances of contracting an STI or having an unintended pregnancy decrease. Have fun, but be safe!
1. Check the expiration date
2. Open the package carefully— no scissors, knives, or teeth!
3. Hold the condom so it looks like a sombrero— with the rim rolled
upwards. Pinch air from the tip with your thumb and forefinger.
4. Place the rolled up condom against the end of the hard penis.
5. With your other hand, unroll it down to the base of the penis. If you have foreskin, pull it back before rolling on the condom.
6. You may want to add water based lubricant to the outside of the condom at this time. This reduces the risk of the condom breaking. Never use oil based lubricant!
7. Right after finishing: hold the rim of the condom rightly at this base of the penis and pull out before the penis becomes soft. Do not spill the semen out of the condom.
8. Throw away the condom- never reuse a condom!
Reminder: Put the condom on before your penis goes into your partner’s body, not just right before ejaculation. 

How long do I have to wait in order for a possible STI to show up in blood or urine tests?

The time that it may take for a possible STI to show up in tests can vary between each Sexually Transmitted Infection. Here are a few facts about some of the most common STIs. For more information, visit
plannedparenthood.org to learn about all STIs and the symptoms that may come with each Infection.
It is important to remember that not everyone reacts to STIs the same way, meaning, having visible symptoms and experiencing symptoms after being sexually active with someone is not the only way to determine whether you in fact have an STI. Be sure to get tested regularly for STIs, including HPV, and HIV.
The following time frames are those in which an STI could appear in a urine, blood, or swab test. Remember, all of these times frames are just estimates. Please keep in mind, if you have contracted an STI, symptoms may occur before the time frames listed below, or they may not occur at all:

Testing wait period:
Gonorrhea & Chlamydia:
About 2 weeks
HIV and Hepatitis C:
About 3-6 months
Herpes & Syphilis:
About one month


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