As with any holiday or break away from reality, many female travellers relax and feel more comfortable doing things they wouldn’t usually do at home; from eating and drinking a little extra to have more sex than usual. With all the sun, sea, sand and sangria lowering their inhibitions many women may even find themselves having unprotected sex which can be life-changing for all the wrong reasons; from catching a sexually transmitted disease to getting pregnant. As such, when you’re getting involved with the local party culture of a new country, it’s more important than ever to be prepared for safe sex, and the planning starts long before you get on your first plane.
To help you to have safe sex while on holiday in 2019 here are five essential tips for female travellers to keep in mind.
Complete Cover – Condoms
The term ‘safe sex’ covers both STI’s as well as unwanted pregnancies, and as such, the simplest way to stay entirely sexually safe while travelling is to pack plenty of condoms. It is worth bearing in mind that if you are staying on a small or underdeveloped island, then there may be a limited supply of condoms once there, so even if you do not plan on having sex while on your travels, it is vital to prepare and pack your own just in case. Also if you don’t use them yourself, it may be worth packing them anyway because you never know when a friend or fellow traveller may need one, and you may end up helping them to have safe sex on holiday too! Alternatively, you can always take discreet and safe sex toys with you. These are now available disguised as other items like lipstick, fruit glass, and you can get them from many online shops while travelling, like lovegasm.
Natural Cycle – Symptom Checker
As long as your holiday is not a last minute plan than in the months leading up to your trip, begin to mark down the start and end date of your monthly cycle. Knowing this information can help you work out when you ovulate and would, therefore, be more likely to get pregnant.
After you have worked out how long your cycle is, then the following month note down when you think ovulation occurs and how you feel. You will know roughly when it is as it happens between 12 and 16 days after the first day of your last period.
- help you log how you feel when you are ovulating so you will recognise it while you are away
- give you a clearer idea of exactly when it is happening in that 12-16 day ‘window’ so you can avoid sex during that time.
It may be helpful to have a pre-holiday discussion about your situation, including looking at different forms of protection, in a free and confidential online appointment with one of the experts at Click Pharmacy.
Contraceptive Pill – Memory Checker
While the least intrusive of the different kinds of female contraceptive on offer, the pill may not be the easiest to use while travelling. Whether it is the requirement for you to take one every day or to have to find a pharmacy that offers the same type of pill, you are looking at a potential forgetful mishap. As such, if you regularly take the pill, and you plan on continuing this for the holiday then ensure you have booked an appointment with your GP to stock up on extra pill packs in case you lose one, end up staying away longer than planned or decide to miss a period by carrying on from one packet to the next without taking the break for menstruation.
Morning After Pill – Family Planning
Getting prepared before you leave means thinking ahead and imagining the worst happening. Unprotected sex can quite easily occur on your travels when your guard is down, and you’re building up intense relationships with exciting and friendly strangers wherever you go. If this happens to you then having the morning after pill with you can be the difference between a holiday mistake and living with a whole change of lifestyle. The morning after pill, which includes Levonelle and ellaOne, can be bought in advance from Click Pharmacy and while they are not designed to be taken regularly due to how they affect your menstrual cycle, they can stop a pregnancy from occurring anywhere up to 5 days after unprotected sex. A brief online assessment by a Click Pharmacy doctor is all that is required, and from there you can buy a pack of one or two tablets.
Internal Contraception – Fine To Forget
Although pregnancy contraception cannot stop you catching a sexually transmitted disease, there are two forms of long-term, internal contraception which you can organise before your holiday so you can at least feel secure in the knowledge that you won’t be coming home pregnant. They allow you to keep up active sex life, whether that’s with a long term partner or someone you meet on your travels because you can forget about having to remember to take pills or count the days of your cycle and they will both help to ensure you are protected from pregnancy.
1) The first of these two forms of internal contraception is the coil, also known as an IUD.
- The non-hormonal copper version of the coil lasts for up to 10 years and makes an inhospitable environment for sperm by releasing copper, as well as thickening the cervical mucus to prevent sperm from getting to the egg.
- The plastic coil, which lasts for between three and five years, releases the hormone progesterone which again changes the mucus, as well as preventing eggs which are ready for fertilisation from releasing.
2) The second internal contraception is the annual implant. A small piece of plastic the size of a hair grip is inserted into your arm and will both stop your monthly period and protect you from pregnancy as it releases progesterone into your body.
Both of these internal options can potentially cause irregular bleeding, so it is worth booking an appointment with your GP sooner rather than later so your cycle has time to get back to normal by the start of your holiday.
To confidentially discuss any of the above options for safe sex while travelling, feel free to book in a free online appointment with one of the Click Pharmacy experts from the comfort of your own home.