Wear a mask while having sex but don't kiss, Canada's top doctor says

Have sex, but don’t kiss, Canada’s top doctor says: Chief health advisor urges wearing masks while getting intimate and avoiding ‘face-to-face closeness’ with new people

  • Dr Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada, says there are steps people can take to stay safe during sex amid the coronavirus pandemic
  • She recommends no kissing and wearing a mask to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets
  • Tam also suggests monitoring yourself and your partner for symptoms and being aware if your partner is at high risk of contracting COVID-19 
  • She also advises limiting the use of alcohol or other substances that lead to unsafe decisions being made around sex

Don’t kiss and consider wearing a mask when having sex to protect yourself from catching the coronavirus, Canada’s top physician said on Wednesday.

In a statement, Dr Theresa Tam, the country’s Chief Public Health Officer, said there is little chance of contracting COVID-19 from semen or vaginal fluid.  

However, sexual activity with new partners does increase the risk of falling ill with the virus, particularly if there is close contact.

‘Like other activities during COVID-19 that involve physical closeness, there are some things you can do to minimize the risk of getting infected and spreading the virus,’ Tam said.  

Dr Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada, recommends no kissing and wearing a mask to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets. Pictured: Tam speaks during a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, August 21

Tam also suggests monitoring yourself and your partner for symptoms and being aware if your partner is at high risk of contracting COVID-19 (file image)

While ‘the lowest risk sexual activity during COVID-19 involves yourself alone’ there are steps people can take to stay safe.

Tam says the most important step is to make sure people have a trusting relationship with their sexual partners.  

She says risk can be reduced by wearing a mask that covers the mouth and nose, avoiding face-to-face closeness and no kissing.

This is because the virus spreads via respiratory droplets, which can be inhaled or land in the nose and mouth.

Additionally, the virus can land on skin and personal belongings, which a person can come into contact with and then touch his or her mouth, nose or eyes.

People should also monitor themselves and their partners for symptoms ahead of any sexual activity and be aware if their partners is at high-risk of catching COVID-10, Tam said.

This includes having underlying conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity or being immunocompromised.

Tam also suggests limiting the use of alcohol or other substances that lead to unsafe decisions being made around sex. 

‘Sexual health is an important part of our overall health,’ she said.  

‘However, sex can be complicated in the time of COVID-19, especially for those without an intimate partner in their household or whose sexual partner is at higher risk for COVID-19.’

But by taking precautions, ‘Canadians can find ways to enjoy physical intimacy while safeguarding the progress we have all made containing COVID-19.”‘ 

DailyMail.com has reached out to the Public Health Agency for comment. 

Canada has reported more than 129,000 cases of COVID-19 and more than 9,100 deaths.

New daily cases are far below peak volumes, but there has been a recent uptick, driven by more infections in certain western Canadian provinces. 

Meanwhile, in the US, there are more than 6.1 million confirmed cases of the virus and more than 184,000 deaths. 

The governments of Canada, the US and Mexico have closed their borders to all non-essential travel since March. It’s been extended for at least one more month until September 21.

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