We’ve all been taught that condoms offer protection from diseases that can be transmitted through s3xual activity, and while this is true, it is also important to know that not every s3xually transmitted infection can be completely kept out with a condom. This is due to the nature of these infections, and their manifestation areas.
When used consistently and correctly, condoms can help prevent pregnancy and s3xually transmitted diseases. When used correctly, condoms can lower the risk of acquiring STIs but do not prevent them completely.
Below are some s3xually transmitted diseases that can be contracted even with a condom on.
GENITAL HERPES: Genital herpes is a common viral STD often characterized by genital sores and pain. It usually results in sores or lesions on the upper thighs, genitals or anus. Since some sores or lesions are found in areas that are exposed during condom use, transmission of infection is possible. Genital Herpes is a very common STD and spreads very easily. It has no cure presently, but certain treatments exist that could help those with the condition live.
MOLLUSCUM CONTAGIOSUM: Molluscum is a virus that manifests as tiny little bumps on the skin. It’s not a very familiar STI, because it doesn’t cause any long-term health problems and is typically asymptomatic other than the appearance of bumps. “It’s a skin condition commonly transmitted between kids, but in adults you usually see it s3xually transmitted. Women will typically notice it on the vulva. The small, round bumps can appear anywhere from two to three months after the time of infection, and may itch or feel tender to the touch.
HUMAN PAPILLOMA VIRUS: HPV is the most common STI—if you’re sexually active, chances are you’ll be exposed to it at some point in your life. Some strains can cause genital warts but others don’t, which is why many people never know they have it. And even without warts present, HPV can be passed with skin-to-skin contact. Some strains can lead to cervical cancer, and while there’s evidence that condom use reduces cervical cancer risk, there isn’t direct evidence of its ability to prevent specific HPV strains.
SYPHILIS: Syphilis is a highly contagious disease spread by sexual activity, including vaginal, anal and mouth action. Fortunately, syphilis is treatable. Syphilis manifests as a round, firm sore. While wearing a condom decreases the odds of getting infected, if the sores are located in areas not covered by the condom, it can be transmitted.
PUBIC LICE: Pubic lice or crab lice are very small insects that infest your genital area, it feeds exclusively on blood. It is common among teenagers and adults who keep a full pubic hair. The pubic lice are spread sexually by skin to skin contact. You can also be infected after sharing bedding, clothing and through toilet seats. Improving your body hygiene by bathing regularly and shaving a lot more can help alleviate the condition.
Bottom line: If you’re s3xually active, it’s important to get tested regularly even if you practice safe s3x.