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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » EXPERT ADVICE » Ask Scarleteen » Antibiotics and Previous Sex

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Author Topic: Antibiotics and Previous Sex
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Hi there! I recently posted about some vaginal sensitivity after repeated intercourse, but I didn't want to confuse topics by posting there again. Today I started a course of penicillin for Strep Throat. I'm on day 4 of a new BC pack that I started Sunday. The last time I had sex was on Saturday, the last day of placebo pills for my previous pack. As I mentioned in my sensitivity post, though, I couldn't really have sex due to sensitivity and a bit of pain. So while there was penetration, it was minimal and there was no ejaculation. Is there any chance having started antibiotics today would interfere with protection provided by the pill for the times (4) I had sex on Friday and Saturday? I do know sperm can survive for multiple days, and I just wanted to make sure. Thank you!
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Something people often space out about the ways the pill works is that one of the three things it does is change the vaginal environment so it's less hospitable to sperm.

In other words, while I don't know of any data to tell us how many days sperm cells can last inside the vulva or cervix of someone using a combined hormonal contraceptive, we can be very sure it's likely nothing close to the handful of days it can survive inside the vaginas/cervixes of people NOT using those medications.

You can -- and should -- always check in with your pharmacist and use backup when they advise, but generally, all that tends to be advised is backing up WHILE you use the antibiotics, and 7 days after. I've never heard anyone in clinical care or with sound information on using the pill suggest a need to be concerned about the time period before a person began antibiotics.

Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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