Staying healthy and safe is a big concern for swinger newbies and veterans alike. The swinging lifestyle is a community, and everyone wants to stay healthy so we can all have more sexy fun. Swingers know that one night of risky sex is a bad idea when you compare it to years of hot safe sex.
If you are just starting out in swinging, you are probably worried about catching a STI/STD. After all you can catch a cold just by shaking hands with someone so we all understand that sex is never 100% safe. Thankfully we can do things to greatly lower the risks and still enjoy our sexy fun with safer sex. This is a reason why some studies are finding people in consensual non-monogamous relationships (like swingers) tend to have a lower risk of contracting an STI than the average American.
We know that sounds odd; more sex must mean more risk, right? Not necessarily. When you think about it, monogamous relationships deal with infidelity – which often occurs when people are drinking and making bad, impulsive decisions. Those bad, impulsive decisions include unprotected sex, driving up their STI risk. Even if a cheater isn’t getting drunk when they’re unfaithful, they may be unwilling to carry condoms or get tested because they are afraid of being caught.
Swingers, on the other hand, aren’t hiding anything from their partner. Swingers don’t need to hide a supply of condoms or get secretly tested; they are open and up-front about how they want to protect themselves and their partners. People in the lifestyle also tend to be a bit better informed about sex in general, which helps them make more informed & safer choices when it comes to STI prevention. Swingers may be having more sex than the average American, but they tend to do it in a much safer fashion.
Thankfully, there are many ways to reduce your chance of exposure to STDs, STIs, or pregnancy. Here are some of the more common strategies used to keep swinging safer for you, your partner, and everyone else.
Avoiding Risky Behaviors
The best way to minimize risk is to just avoid risk. Many swingers opt to only engage in soft swap because it carries less risk than full swap. Staying away from penetrative play puts you at a much smaller risk for STIs and accidental pregnancy. Even if you prefer full swap playing, you should talk with your partner about whether or not backdoor play is on the menu. Anal sex does increase your risk of STIs. If you enjoy anal, then choose to play only with partners who have recently been tested, and of course use protection. There are many ways to pick and choose your play boundaries to help you reduce the risk of STIs and keep you healthy for a long time.
Preventative Medicine & Vaccines
Scientists are doing amazing things with medicine. We are not your doctors, and we aren’t giving you medical advice. This is just some helpful information to help you start a conversation with your doctor. You should consult your doctor to figure out what is best for you. There are birth control options, HPV vaccines, Prep & Pep HIV preventation options, and Hepatitis vaccines to name just a few things you should talk with your doctor.
Fluid bonding is more common amongst polyamory couples, but it is certainly an option for swingers. Fluid bonding is when you commit with another person or persons to cease all unprotected sex with people outside of the relationship. For example, most married couples are fluid bonded, since they are monogamous and only have unprotected sex with each other. In theory, this is great. In reality, it rarely works for a long time in the swinging lifestyle.
In the last few years they have made great advances in better feeling condoms. It greatly reduces your sex risk when you use condoms for penetrative sex. For oral sex, they have many great flavored condoms to try. We are big fans of the thinner non-latex condoms that are now available.
No matter how you decide to control the risks involved with sex, you should include regular STI testing even if you have no STI symptoms. Testing can help you get treatment before any symptoms get too nasty or even show up. It helps protect your partners & your reputation as a good sex partner.
The best defense against STIs is honesty and trust. You should be honest with your play partners and expect the same from them. Honesty is expected within the swinger community for this reason. If you ever suspect a partner is not being 100% honest, you should decline to play. Trust your gut and do not take chances.
Just remember to use common sense and think with your big head, not the one that lives below the waist. It can be too easy to get caught up in the heat of passion and expose yourself to a risk. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s smarter to decline sexy play time. There will be many more opportunities in the future – but only if you keep yourself healthy! It just doesn’t make sense to take unnecessary risks that can endanger your entire future as a swinger. Thankfully, there are many ways to have your sexy cake and eat it too!