When you’re social distancing sex can be pretty difficult. Especially if you’re in lockdown away from your partner. Well, the smart people at Harvard have come to our rescue again. Researchers at the university have put together a Study called Sexual Health in the SARS-CoV-2 Era.
As the novel coronavirus continues to spread, questions on how safe it is to have sex right now is a legitimate question in the minds of many. Since the virus can be spread by aerosols, all forms of sexual activity involving physical contact carry the risk of transmission.
Many organizations and research body have tried to offer guidance on how to seek intimacy and ensure sexual health during the quarantine. The Dutch government recently advised people to see out a “sex buddy” during quarantine i.e. a single person they know is not infected with the novel coronavirus. This was suggested to reduce physical contact with many people while also keeping alive your sex life.
Even we did a piece listing out steps on how to take care of your sexual health at the start of the pandemic, by sharing a quarantine sex guide. Now that Harvard has come with its own study, we look at some more suggestions made by the university.
Can Sexual Activity Lead To Virus Transmission?
The study says that since particles can remain on surfaces for days, all forms of in-person sexual activity carries a risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission. Infected individuals may spread the virus by passing off the infection onto their skin and subsequent to other objects around them as well. This can then lead to the virus being transmitted to one’s sexual partner.
Additionally, since there is a lack of studies regarding whether the virus can spread through semen, it says that it should be assumed that semen could potentially be infectious. Even in cases where traces of the novel coronavirus has been found in semen, it has not been confirmed whether the virus can spread sexually.
What Harvard Wants You To Do To Take Care Of Your Sexual Health
Harvard has listed down a range of sexual practices in the order of risk involved. Sexual activities with the lowest list of virus transmission involve sexual abstinence(duh), masturbation and sexual activity via digital platforms like phone sex or video calls. It said these 3 activities are the safest forms of pleasure during quarantine and can allow people to take care of their sexual health while a pandemic is going on. These activities were associated with a low risk of infection. However, for digital sex, Harvard also suggested several sources that people practicing it should read so that the activity doesn’t lead to any violation of privacy or someone coming in contact with a virtual sex predator.
What About Sex With Other People?
Well, Harvard knows abstinence isn’t possible for all, so it has also expounded on what precautions do people need to take having sex during the quarantine.
They’ve classified sexual partners into two categories, with different levels of risks associated with both. The subsequent precautions that need to be practiced` for one’s sexual health differ as well.
Sex with Someone You’re Self-Quarantined With
The study says the people can be at risk in this case if the person they’re having sex with has picked up the infection while they were outside. The person may also be at risk if the sexual partner is an asymptomatic COVID-10 patient.
To ensure that you’re not having sexual intercourse with a possible patient, an antibody test has been suggested as a solution. This could help in evaluating the sexual risk of your partner and will help you see if the person has been exposed to the virus in the past.
Sex With Someone Whom You’re Not Quarantined With
According to Harvard, this poses the greatest risk to your sexual health. However, if you’re still indulging in this, it has suggested a slew of precautions for you to practice.
The first and foremost is that you should wear a mask. Yes, wear a mask at all times when you’re having sex. This obviously makes kissing, oral sex, and other practices prohibited as well. Other suggestions by the study include showering before and after sex, while also cleaning the surface on which you’ve had intercourse with alcohol wipes or soap.
So that is how Harvard suggests you have sex from now on. For those of you who want to take care of their sexual health during the pandemic, these may be the best options out there right now.