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Can I Stop Using Condoms While On PrEP?

Whether you decide to continue to use condoms after starting PrEP is a personal decision.

If you are taking PrEP you don't need to use condoms to add additional HIV prevention. PrEP is incredibly powerful at preventing HIV. However, PrEP won't protect against other STIs.

Some people may keep condoms in the mix to prevent some other STIs or as contraception - to avoid pregnancy.

Other people skip condoms and make sure they test, and notify their partners of any STIs that do pop up. The choice is yours.

Some things you might want to know about PrEP and condoms are…

It’s important to note that:

  • PrEP only prevents HIV. It does not prevent other STIs

  • Condoms are currently the only easily available way to prevent some STIs

  • Condoms do a pretty good job at preventing some STIs (like Chlamydiia, Gonorrhoea, and Syphilis) however these STIs can still be transmitted even with consistent condom use, especially through oral sex and in some instances through kissing and other body contact. [1]

  • Condoms may not be very effective at preventing some STIs like pubic lice, scabies, and genital warts and herpes. These STIs are transmittable in areas that a condom doesn’t cover.

As part of your PrEP strategy, you will be required to get a full STI test every three months. This means you are able to treat any STIs you do pick up very early.

Whether you use condoms or not depends on a conversation you have with your sexual partners.

Remember, STIs are a result of having a productive and fulfilling sex life - and nothing to be ashamed of.

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