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Health Vagina Sex Periods Std Feminism
Health Vagina Sex Periods Std Feminism
Molly Longest / Her Campus
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Nottingham chapter.

Writing on difficult subjects is always easier with a tea in hand. For this week, I’ve gone for a “Dirty” Chai, which seems rather fitting for this week’s chat on sexual health.


Disclaimer: I could not be further from a healthcare professional and am in no way qualified to give medical advice, but, as a 21-year-old student, I do have a certain amount of experience in the STIgmas surrounding sexual health.


Most people like sex. Some people like to talk about sex. Few people like to talk about sexual health and STIs. Sexually Transmitted Infections are kind of inevitable and incredibly common if you’re having unprotected, regular sex with multiple partners. Some people get lucky, and brag about the fact they have never had an STI yet don’t use a condom. Well good for them. But quite frankly, it’s a risk that shouldn’t be taken.


There are many different types of STI, some of which I (shamefully) had never even heard of before. You’ve got your Chlamydia, Gonorroea, Syphilis, Herpes…the standards which get taught in Sex Ed at school. There is also Genital Warts, HIV and Trichomoniasis (a new one to add to the vocabulary). Basically, it’s not as simple as “if you have unprotected sex you could get pregnant or get chlamydia” –  which I distinctly remember being told in our Year 10 PSHE lessons.  


At school, STIs were spoken about like they’re the plague and only “bad” people get them. This is simply not true, and it isn’t true about the people who get them either. The stigmatisation that people who have STIs are “dirty” or “get around too much” needs to end. ASAP. 


I think as my generation has grown up, we have realised and become more accepting that STIs aren’t the be all and end all, and that they in no way reflect who you are as an individual. That being said, the importance of looking after your sexual health still takes a backseat for some people, and the thought of going to your GP or sexual health clinic still inflicts fear and shame. It has been made even easier to check yourself for STIs with things like at home test kits, offered by our wonderful (and must be protected at ALL costs) NHS. University Health Services are catered to and expect students to need advice and medical assistance with STIs. 


As with most things’ health related, the sooner you get an STI diagnosed, the better. Left untreated, some can have quite dangerous and devastating effects. This just further emphasises how we still need to talk more about sexual health and get rid of some of the dangerous taboos which stop people from getting checked in the first place. Our bodies deserve the best chance of fighting infections, so don’t let some backwards and inaccurate perceptions of STIs affect your health.


Follow @NUHsexualhealth on Twitter for information about services in Nottingham. 


… And find out even more information here:




Emily Hall

Nottingham '20

3rd year English student from University of Nottingham.