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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » EXPERT ADVICE » Ask Scarleteen » Skin to skin

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Author Topic: Skin to skin
eryn_smiles
Peer Ambassador
Member # 35643

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Would you guys know whether shaving pubic hair significantly increases risk of getting the skin-to-skin transmissible STIs like herpes, HPV, molluscum? I've heard it does, but not sure if there are actually stats about it.

Is the risk high enough that you'd advise people not to shave?

Cheers!

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"Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation and that is an act of political warfare."

Audre Lorde

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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You ask the best questions. [Smile]

I've poured through some things on this before, and what I can gather is that it does significantly increase risks of transmission of all STIs IF the skin is inflammed or irritated in any way, especially if there are any shaving cuts. In other words, the same advice and data we have on transmission pathways with wounds goes for all wounds, including minor ones, and things like minor skin scrapes do tend to be part and parcel of shaving any area of the body.

So, the advice I tend to give is that it's probably fine to shave if one wants, but safest not to shave just before sex.

Here are a few links to peek at:
http://www.ashastd.org/learn/learn_mc.cfm
http://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0031395505701395
http://journals.lww.com/stdjournal/Abstract/2006/07000/Herpes_Virus_Type_2_Infection_and_Genital_Symptoms.2.aspx

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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