Download: Supersnappy Toolkit (PDF)
Sure, you got a tool. Even tools need tools to work just right! Check ou this helpful guide to stay smart about your parts!
Here are a variety of tools to help you reduce your risk of getting or transmitting an STI (Sexually Transmitted Infection). The ways to help prevent HIV transmission do not necessarily work to prevent other STIs. This toolkit is part of Gay City Health Project’s “ACTION: a Handy STI Guide for Gay, Bi and Trans Men”)
A condom is a thin latex or polyurethane tube that’s rolled onto an erect cock and prevents the exchange of cum, blood and vaginal fluids during sex. Receptive condoms, which are plastic sheaths that are inserted into the ass or vagina, are also available. Some tips for using condoms are:
- Choose condoms that are the right size for you and/or your partner.
- Check the expiration date.
- Open the packet gently so you don’t tear it.
- Ideally, cocks should be fully hard when condoms are put on.
- If uncut, first pull back the foreskin.
- Pinch the tip to remove the air. Hold the condom by the tip and roll it all the way down to the base of the cock.
- Always use a water based or silicone lubricant. Oil based lubricants weaken latex, causing condoms to break.
- Hold onto the base of the condom when pulling out. Take off the condom right after cumming, while the cock is still hard.
- If having sex with multiple partners, use a new condom for each person.
- During long or vigorous sessions of sex, condoms can start to wear out and become more vulnerable to breakage. Switch to a new one when needed.
Always use a water based or silicone lubricant. Oil based lubes can break down latex. Lubes containing Nonoxynol-9 can irritate your ass and vagina, making it easier to get STDs. Spit isn’t the best lube. Dry fucks can cause condoms to break, which makes it a riskier fuck. Using plenty of lube is one way to prevent condom breakage. You may need to re-apply lube several times when fucking. Some lubes contain numbing agents, which may both reduce pleasure and make it more difficult for you or your partners to feel pain. Don’t use silicone lube with silicone sex toys.
Use latex gloves and lots of water based or silicone lube for fingering and fisting. Remove jewelry, and trim and file your nails so you don’t cut the glove or your partner. For deeper fisting, use longer gloves. Turn gloves inside out as you take them off.
To disinfect a silicone toy, boil it for 3 minutes, then clean it with antibacterial soap and warm water. For a non-silicone toy, use a condom then clean it with antibacterial soap and warm water. Non-silicone toys cannot be fully disinfected. To clean an electric toy, use a wet sponge and antibacterial soap, and don’t submerge the toy in water. For all insertive toys, use plenty of lube. Use a new condom for each person who uses the toy. Also make sure to clean fetish gear like floggers, whips and medical toys between uses.
Brushing or flossing can create small cuts in your mouth that could make you more susceptible to certain STDs. So wait at least 30 minutes after brushing or flossing before you have oral sex, including rimming.
Get vaccinated against Hepatitis A and B. To find a Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B vaccine provider near you, check out www.hepclinics.com.
If injecting drugs, including steroids, use a new, clean needle every time. Don’t share works, including cookers, spoons, cotton and tourniquets. To clean a needle if it’s not brand new: 1) Draw clean water into the needle, shake it and squirt it out. Do this 3 times. 2) Do the same twice using clean, full strength bleach, leaving the bleach in for at least 30 seconds each time. 3) Flush the needle 3 times with clean water. To clean a cooker: rinse it with clean water, then soak it in bleach for 2 minutes.
Dispose of needles safely in sharps containers or syringe drop boxes. Don’t dispose of needles in your garbage or recycling. Depending on your location, sharps containers may be available for free at needle exchange locations or for a small cost at pharmacies. Syringe drop boxes may also be available 24 hours a day at some public health centers in your area. Contact your local department of public health for details.
Piercing, tattooing and branding equipment should all be sterile and should not be shared. Body modification should be done by professionals. For play piercing and cutting, disinfect the body area and use sterile, disposable needles and scalpel blades. Don’t share needles or blades. Dispose of needles and blades safely in a sharps container.
- Talk with your sex partners about your STD status before sex.
- Pay attention to your and your partners’ bodies, looking for any warts, lesions, unusual discharge or other signs of STDs. People without symptoms can still be infectious.
- Based on the STDs you know or feel you each have, make decisions together about what you’ll do sexually.
- Use lots of water based or silicone lube.
- Poppers dilate the blood vessels in your ass and vagina, making it easier for STDs including HIV to enter your bloodstream.
- Viagra increases blood flow to your cock, vagina and ass, increasing the risk of STD transmission.
- Don’t use poppers and viagra within 24 hours of each other. The combination can cause a heart attack.
- Pee right after sex. The acidity can help clean out your urethra.
- Wash your hands and body before and after sex.
- Use plain warm water for enemas and douches, not harsh detergents which are irritating to the skin and make STD transmission easier.
- Reduce your stress level and take care of your overall health. The more stressed, tired or sick you are, the greater chance exposure to an STD will result in infection.
If you choose to not use condoms, latex gloves or dams, here are three extra ideas that may help you reduce your risk, none of which are guaranteed to be effective:
- Pulling out before cumming may reduce the risk of HIV transmission.
- Reducing your number of sex partners, and taking breaks to allow time for your cock, ass or vagina to heal between experiences, may reduce risk.
- Being the insertive partner may reduce risk, since the chance of getting HIV or other STDs is higher for the receptive partner.