Safer Sex 101

Consistent use of barrier methods (condoms & dental dams) is an important step in preventing transmission of STIs. Boynton Health provides no-cost safer sex supplies to students so you can use the appropriate protection method every time. 

You've got questions, and we've got answers! 

Below are some of the most common questions we hear from students and some Boynton Health-approved videos and websites that will help you plan for healthy, safer sex.

Frequent questions

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When should I use condoms?

  • You should use condoms for every type of sex, every time. Condoms will reduce the risk of transmission of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) during vaginal/front hole, anal, and oral sex. Condoms will also reduce the risk of pregnancy during vaginal/front hole sex. Using lube with a condom for any type of sex will reduce the risk of sensitive tissue tearing or condom breakage.
  • For oral-vaginal/front hole and oral-anal sex, a dental dam should be used to reduce the risk of transmission of STIs.

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How do I use a condom properly?

  • Planned Parenthood video: A step-by-step guide on the proper use of condoms, and additional written information on the site.
  • Sexplanations video: A casual explanation and demonstration by Dr. Lindsey Doe, a clinical sex edutainer. This video has information specific for people with intact (uncircumcised) penises.

What are dental dams and how do I use them?

  • A dental dam is a type of barrier method, like a condom. It is a thin, square sheet that is usually made of rubber. The dental dams are placed over the vulva or anus for oral-vaginal/front hole or oral-anal intercourse. Boynton Health offers latex dental dams that come in different flavors.
  • Brown University Health and Wellness video: A guide on the proper use of dental dams, and alternative options if dental dams are unavailable or if you are unable to use latex. 

What do I do with lube?

Why are there different condom sizes?

  • Just like clothes, condoms come in various sizes. In order to have safer and pleasurable sex, choosing the right size can make a difference in your sexual experience. Boynton Health recommends trying out different sizes and types of condoms to find your preference.
  • Boynton Health offers three different condom sizes:
    • Snugger fit  condoms have a smaller ring size for people who prefer a tighter sensation.
    • Standard condoms have a standard ring size that fits most.
    • Magnum condoms have the widest ring size. Using a condom that is too big can increase the risk of the condom slipping off during intercourse. 

Which lubricant should I use?

  • There are many different types of lubricants available in the market, and choosing the right one for you can be confusing. 
    • The Our Bodies Ourselves website can help you understand which lubricants are the best for you based on your preferences. 
    • Boynton Health offers water-based lubricants and silicone-based lubricants.

What if I am allergic to latex?

I want to talk about my sexual health. Who can I talk to?

  • If you’d like to talk to someone in person, please make an appointment. Or, if you have a question for a nurse, you can call the Boynton Health Nurse Lin. This number is answered 24 hours a day.