The American Sexual Health Association (ASHA) defines sexual health as “the ability to embrace and enjoy our sexuality throughout our lives.” As an important element of physical and emotional well-being, sexual health is a positive, safe, and respectful approach to sexuality, sexual relationships, and experiences that are free from discrimination and violence.
The American Sexual Health Association (ASHA) notes that being sexually active means:
- Understanding that sexuality is a natural part of life and involves more than sexual behavior.
- Recognizing and respecting the sexual rights we all share.
- Having access to sexual health information, education, and care.
- Making an effort to prevent unintended pregnancies and STDs and seek care and treatment when needed; but that having a sexually transmitted infection or unwanted pregnancy does not prevent someone from being or becoming sexually healthy.
- Being able to experience sexual pleasure, satisfaction, and intimacy when desired.
- Being able to communicate about sexual health with others including sexual partners and healthcare providers.
Sexual experiences are a natural and wonderful part of life! Having positive experiences comes with understanding, communicating, practicing safe measures, gaining comfort, exploring, and maintaining a sense of fun.
As part of the process, consider learning as much as possible about healthy relationships and sexual activity, safer sex, and reproductive decisions.
If you have a partner, consider having a conversation about your relationship, sexual expectations, needs and desires.
- Explore your own sexual feelings fully and understand how your desires and fantasies may influence decisions.
- Stay in control of your feelings and decisions by not allowing drugs and alcohol to impair judgment.
- Understand that there are more ways than sex to show someone that you care about them and make sure to give and get respect from your partner in your actions.
- American Sexual Health Association
- Planned Parenthood
- Association of Reproductive Health Professionals
- Go Ask Alice
- World Health Association: Defining Sexual Health
How We Can Help
- Schedule a Wellness Appointment
- Stop by CSW (Bard 101) or Medical Services (Tower 1) for free supplies (male and female condoms, latex free condoms, and lubricants)
- Consult with Medical Services about your sexual and reproductive health
- Sexual Violence Response