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Anal sex

Anal sex is any type of sexual activity that involves the anal area (bottom).

This includes:

  • Penetrating the anus with a penis
  • Penetrating the anus with fingers or sex toys, such as vibrators
  • Oral sex - stimulating the anus using the mouth or tongue (also known as rimming)

What are the main risks of anal sex?

Penetrative anal sex has a higher risk of spreading sexually transmitted infections (STIs) than many other types of sexual activity. This is because the lining of the anus is thin and can easily be damaged, which makes it more vulnerable to infection.

STIs that can be passed on through anal sex include:

Some infections caused by bacteria or viruses can be passed on through oral-anal sex such as hepatitis A and E.coli, and it is also possible to pass on an STI by inserting a finger or sex toy into someone’s anus.

Getting tested for Chlamydia & Gonorrhoea

Sexual Health Wirral now offer Chlamydia & Gonorrhoea testing via rectal swab sample. This test is the most suitable and thorough test for anybody who receives anal sex. Log onto our ‘request a test’ page ***add in link***, register your details and answer some questions, and we will send out your free NHS STI test pack.

How can I make anal sex safer?

Using condoms will help protect you against STIs when you have anal sex. Oil based lubricants such as lotions and moisturisers can cause latex condoms to break or fail so a water based lubricant should be used.

Male and female couples should always use a new condom if they have vaginal sex straight after anal sex. This avoids transferring bacteria from the anus.