While many people take the necessary measures to prevent the transmission of HIV/AIDS by wearing condoms, the same caution is not always exercised as it relates to oral sex. While the risk of transmitting the disease via oral sex is less when compared to rates of vaginal and anal transmission, one can acquire the disease solely through oral sex in some cases.
The Centers for Disease Control just released an updated fact sheet discussing oral sex and HIV. Some key points:
- In a national survey of teens conducted for The Kaiser Family Foundation, 26% of sexually active 15- to 17-year-olds surveyed responded that one “cannot become infected with HIV by having unprotected oral sex,” and an additional 15% didn’t know whether or not one could become infected in that manner.
- Several co-factors may increase the risk of HIV transmission through oral sex, including: oral ulcers, bleeding gums, genital sores, and the presence of other STDs
- The use of a physical barrier during oral sex (i.e., a condom or dental dam) can reduce the risk of transmission of HIV and other STDs
You can access the complete information on the CDC website at: http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/resources/factsheets/oralsex.