Advice and guidance
Good sexual health is important. Find out about safer sex, sexually transmitted infections and how to manage risks.
Many people with sexually transmitted infections (STIs) do not get symptoms, so it's worth getting tested even if you feel fine. If you think you have an STI, the earlier you're tested, the sooner treatment can be given if it's needed.
An STI can be passed from one person to another through sexual contact, including vaginal, anal and oral sex.
STIs can pass between men and women, and from women to women and men to men.
"Where can I get contraception?"
"Which method of contraception suits me?"
"I'm under 16 – can I get contraception?"
Emergency Hormonal Contraception (EHC)
Emergency contraception can be used if contraception hasn’t been used when having sex or if it has failed, e.g. the condom has split or a pill has been missed.
Emergency hormonal contraception can be taken up to three to five days after having unprotected sex. The sooner it is taken the more effective it is. It can be bought over the counter from many pharmacies if you are over 16, or free from GPs and young person’s clinics, some genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinics, NHS walk-in centres, NHS minor injuries units or hospital emergency departments. Some schools may also be able to provide it via the school nurse. It does not have any long-term side effects and is very safe.