STI: Can you get infected without having intercourse?

Thought you could only get an STI from having penetrative intercourse? You might want to keep on reading to find out...

Sex and myths tend to go hand in hand. The amount of false information regarding all things sex out there is staggering. From the pull-out method to what our preconceived notions of sexual satisfaction entail, there's a lot to dispel.

Can you transmit and STI without having intercourse?

One example of such misinformation is the idea that STIs can only be caught through penetrative sexual intercourse. Unfortunately gentlemen, that is simply not the case. According to Superintendent Pharmacist, Navin Khosla, who specialises in men's health:

Some STDs like HPV are transmitted simply by touch and you could catch them without or outside of sexual contact

Safer sex will always be the answer

As it turns out, these can simply be passed down through skin to skin fondling that doesn't necessarily involve direct genitalia to genitalia contact. Oral sex for one can definitely be one way of getting unwanted STIs (even though it is more uncommon). Sharing sex toys is another way you could transmit an STI such as genital warts onto your partner.

For Dr. Khosla, it is important to take precaution whenever you can if you don't know for certain the sexual history of your partner. If you do decide to have intercourse, the most effective way of preventing an STI is by using a condom. He explains:

If you are unaware that you are living with an untreated STI or STD, you could experience infertility. Even worse, if symptoms are left untreated or a diagnosis takes too long, there could be rare but life-threatening consequences.

Before adding that:

Some STIs such as HIV and syphilis can even be fatal, while certain strains of HPV can cause cancer.
Anal sex: Can ordinary condoms protect against STIs? Anal sex: Can ordinary condoms protect against STIs?