Sexual health is a term that is still under development because cultural conversation is something that is still continuing to evolve. Currently if attempts are made to establish norms and also come up with a definite definition of sexual health, it could lead to a backlash as this may be used to profile or even label certain people as being abnormal or unhealthy sexually. According to the world health organization report of year 2002 sexual health is referred to as a state of physical, emotional, mental and social well-being that is related to sexuality. Sexual health is a vital part of a person’s physical and mental health. It is a very significant part of a person’s identity as a human being including his/her rights to privacy, to family life, and living a life that’s free from any discrimination. Below are some characteristics of sexually healthy adults:
With Regards to Communication
With regards to communication a sexually healthy adult will be able to:
- A sexually healthy adult is one who is able to interact with people of the same and opposite sex appropriately and in respectful ways.
- The individual should also be able to communicate effectively with family and friends and if need be able to ask questions of other people about sexual issues.
- A sexually healthy adult will also be able to communicate and discuss sexual boundaries appropriately.
- Can communicate with respect the desire to have sex and also not have sex.
- Is able to accept denials to sexual advances positively without getting personal and feeling rejected.
- Should also be able to talk with his/her partner about sexual intercourse before it happens and also talk about possible contraceptive measures e.g. condom use for the act to remain safe.
With Regards to Relationships
- A sexually healthy adult can comfortably develop a friendship that is not sexually oriented with a person of the opposite sex. A sexually healthy adult can be friends with a person of the opposite sex and maintain a non-exploitative relationship.
With Regards to Self Worth
- Sexually healthy adults appreciate their bodies, are sensually aware and are able to remain conscious within their bodies.
- When you are an adult who is sexually healthy you will be able allow yourself to experience pleasurable sensual and sexual feelings.
- Sexually healthy adults usually have the ability to nature themselves and others and are also ready to accept the nurturing from others.
- Are able to get delighted in sexual experiences of their choice and be able to distinguish when they need touch instead of sex and be able to discuss their needs for touch get satisfied appropriate ways.
- Sexually healthy adults will also not allow themselves to be vulnerable to others.
- Are usually comfortable with their sexual identity and orientation.
With Regards to Education
- Sexually healthy adults understand the consequences of any sexual activity, can comprehend the effects of media messages on what they think, feel, and value.
- Are able to respect the rights of all people who enjoy and engage the various consensual and non-exploitative behaviors.
With Regards to Values
- Can be able to decide on what they deem personally as right and act on it.
- Is able to tolerate other people and their values.
- Will not be threatened by other people who have different sexual orientation from them.
- Will be respectful to other people who have different cultural values, ethnic heritage, age, socio-economic status, gender, and religion that is different from theirs.
With Regards to Body Integrity, Contraception and Protection
A person will be considered sexually healthy if:
- They can take responsibility for their own bodies and their own bodily pleasures i.e. orgasms.
- If a person is sexually active for instance a lady, she must be able to use contraception in an effective manner to prevent unwanted or unplanned pregnancies.
- They use condoms to avoid sexually transmitted infections such as HIV or syphilis.
- Is involved in the practice of health promoting behaviors such as doing regular check-ups for testicular or breast cancers and routine testing for STDs.
With Regards to Spirituality
Sexually healthy adults are those who:
- Respect the sanctity of sexual union.
- Have the understanding that possession of sexual energy goes hand in hand with being human.
- Understand that one way of that human can connect their body and soul is through sex.
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It is important that people get educated about their sexuality by being enlightened about the numerous sexual health issues that are often deliberately ignored. When people are informed about safe sex choices and the consequences of engaging in unprotected sexual activities then it will be easy for them to make informed decisions which will be beneficial to them.