YOUNG women are being put ‘at risk’ because the NHS won’t talk about anal sex, surgeons have warned.
Any type of sex has risks, including sexually transmitted diseases.
AlamyTwo surgeons have warned that women don’t have enough information when it comes to the risks around anal sex[/caption]
Anal sex is anything from penetration of the anus with a penis, penetrating the anus with a finger or sex toy or oral sex, such as using the tongue to stimulate the anus – also known as rimming.
The NHS says that this kind of sex has a higher risk of spreading infection than many other acts.
This, medics say, is because the lining of the anus is thin and can be easily damage, making you more vulnerable to infection.
Two surgeons, Tabitha Gana and Lesley Hunt have said that women are at greater risk of infection and illness from anal sex.
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Writing in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), the pair said there has been a rise in the popularity of this type of intercourse.
As a consequence, they say women are having issues with pain, bleeding and STIs.
This, they claim, could be prevented if doctors’ were not as reluctant to discuss the risks associated with the practise.
In the report they said: “Anal intercourse is considered a risky sexual behaviour because of its association with alcohol, drug use and multiple sex partners.
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“Increased rates of faecal incontinence and anal sphincter injury have been reported in women who have anal intercourse.
“Women are at a higher risk of incontinence than men because of their different anatomy and the effects of hormones, pregnancy and childbirth on the pelvic floor.
“Women have less robust anal sphincters and lower anal canal pressures than men, and damage caused by anal penetration is therefore more consequential.
“The pain and bleeding women report after anal sex is indicative of trauma, and risks may be increased if anal sex is coerced.”
The National Survey of Sexual Attitudes recently showed that participation in heterosexual anal intercourse among 16 to 24-year-olds rose from 12.5 per cent to 28.5 per cent over the past few decades in the UK.
The surgeons said that the rise in popularity could be down to shows such as Sex and the City making it seem ‘racy and daring’.
They also highlighted that the NHS is not discussing the risks, as practitioners don’t want to appear to be ‘homophobic or judgemental’.
But by swerving these discussion altogether, they claimed the service is ‘failing’ a generation of young women.
With better information, they say women who want to have anal sex will be able to protect themselves from possible harm.
“Those who agree to anal sex reluctantly to meet society’s expectations or please partners, may feel better empowered to say no,” they added.
In order to make anal sex safer, the NHS says you should use condoms.
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They said you should also use a water-based lubricant as oil-based ones can cause condoms to break or fall off.
If you have vaginal sex straight after anal sex then you should use a new condom.