Protection against HIV and other STIs in sex between men

Page last reviewed 8.10.2020

About HIV and other STI’s

STIs are infectious diseases which are transmitted through sexual contact. STIs can be transmitted in both anal sex and oral sex if a condom is not used. Other STI’s are much more common and easily transmitted than HIV, but it’s good to be aware of the fact that HIV is more common among gay and bisexual men than among other people.

The highest risk of HIV is in anal sex without condom. In oral sex, the one who performs it and has a possibility of getting sperm in their mouth has a small possibility of HIV transmission. Other STI’s (chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis) can transmitted in both anal and oral sex (including rimming). Hepatitis C can be transmitted if there’s bleeding during unprotected anal sex. You can read more about HIV here and other STI’s here.

STI’s may remain asymptomatic for years, but they can nevertheless be transmitted.

Left untreated, STIs can lead to various kinds of complications, such as infertility (both in men and women), different kinds of infections and joint problems. It is important to test and treat sex partners as well. An untreated STI always significantly increases the risk of HIV transmission.

The proper use of a condom is the only way to avoid STIs.

If you have had unprotected sex and you want to know whether you have an STI or if you have developed symptoms, get yourself tested.