Quick guide to safe sex

The results of the 2011 Trojan Sexual Health Report Card are in just in time for Kent State’s annual Sex Week. In the analysis of sexual health resources at American universities, Kent State main campus falls at number 71 out of the 141 surveyed. We’ve fallen from our previous position of 46, but we still beat University of Akron! Anyway, here’s your local guide to safe sex. You’re welcome, Kent State.


It’s pretty simple—if you want to avoid STDs and have sex at the same time, you need to wear a condom. While other contraceptives can keep an unwanted pregnancy away, only condoms can keep diseases away. You can find condoms virtually everywhere. The free ones come from non-profit organizations like Planned Parenthood, free-spirited festivals like Sex Week and Warped Tour or showings of the Vagina Monologues. But if your pride won’t allow you to take freebies or if you require a non-latex condom, go to any drug store or supermarket and pick some up. Now that you know where to find them, you should probably know how to use them. In case you missed the obligatory sex-ed banana demonstration, there are some exciting descriptions inside the condom box with which you may educate yourself. However, here are five basic condom tips for safety!

1. Check the expiration date

2. Make sure there are no punctures in the wrapper. If you can feel the air pocket, that’s a good indicator that you’re good to go.

3. Don’t use your teeth to open the wrapper

4. Don’t use oil-based lubricant as it corrodes latex

5. Don’t reuse or continue using a condom after you’re finished with it. Don’t even think about it.

Female Birth Control:

There are four popular kinds of long-term birth control for young women: pills, patches, shots and IUDs (that stands for intrauterine device). A licensed professional can teach you everything you’d need or want to know about these and also give you a prescription, so to decide which method is right for you, make an appointment with your gynecologist. If you don’t have one, call the Kent Planned Parenthood at 330-678-8011 and make an appointment there. Go to your appointment with a list of medicines you’re taking, questions you may have and at least an idea about how you’re going to pay for the visit and the contraceptive.

Morning After Pill:

If you’re at all worried about failed contraceptives, an emergency contraceptive may be the way to go. Emergency contraceptives contain levonorgestrel, which is a synthetic hormone contraceptive. The most popular of these “morning after” pills is Plan-B, which can be found in drugstores and at Planned Parenthood. You have about five days (and that’s pushing it) after your questionable sex to effectively prevent pregnancy with this pill. While this option is expensive, it may be your best choice. Just because they know you too well, more information about emergency contraceptives and where to find them is available on the Emergency Contraceptive Hotline at 1-888-NOT-2-LATE.

So take this fountain of information and use it well! When in doubt, consult your local, friendly Planned Parenthood, whose information can be found here.

Carefully examine this helpful map to locate Planned Parenthood, KSU’s Women’s Center and the closest drug stores. And a Happy Sex Week to you.

View Kent’s Safe Sex Resources in a larger map

Contact Kaysea Thomas at [email protected].