The ABC’s of Gay Sex

ANAL SEX

Anal sex comes in several forms. The term is most commonly used to describe a man penetrating another man’s (or woman’s) anus with his penis. Another form of anal sex is penetrating a man or woman’s anus with a dildo, which is a device made to resemble a penis, or a vibrator, a device that uses battery or electrical power to generate an oscillating motion intended to give a man pleasure by stimulating his prostate gland.

The anus is one of those canals lined with a mucous membrane. It is much more fragile and susceptible to slight tears than is the skin on your butt or arm or face, which is designed to cope with all of the wear and tear of everyday life.

Viruses (such as HIV) and infections (such as syphilis) can be transmitted when an infected person’s mucous membrane or internal fluid such as blood, saliva or semen comes into contact with the mucous membrane of an uninfected person. The chance of such transmission is heightened when there’s even the tiniest tear in the mucous membrane of one or another sexual partner. Such tears routinely occur when there is any sort of friction in one’s anal canal. They aren’t likely to be noticed because the tear is usually very small, and the bleeding is minimal.

So if your sexual partner is HIV positive or has a sexually transmittable disease such as syphilis, chlamydia or gonorrhea and inserts his uncovered penis into your anus, you have put yourself at risk of contracting his disease. The federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says there’s a 50 in 10,000 chance of becoming infected with HIV if you are the receptive partner in anal intercourse (the “bottom”). The risk is much lower if you are the insertive partner (the “top”), at a chance of 6.5 in 10,000. While those number might make you think the risk is low, remember that there’s only a 1 in 175 million chance of winning the Powerball lottery. But someone does win!

A dildo or vibrator used for anal sex is not likely to transmit a virus such as HIV. But if it’s not super clean, it can transmit other bugs and cause a different sort of infection. And if a device is used by both partners, there’s a chance it could transmit one partner’s syphilis to the other.

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Dave Smith
Dave Smith
8 years ago

HIV cannot always be isolated in urine, and if it is, HIV concentrations are too small to pose a threat of infection. The HIV risk from drinking urine is negligible. Some conditions contribute to blood being present in a person’s urine, which would contribute to a risk of HIV transmission if your partner was infected. Urine is fine on the outside of intact skin. If there are any breaks on the outside of the skin, don’t urinate (piss) near the break(s). Remember that a pimple or shaving cut is also a break. Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a virus that can be… Read more »

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