According to the World Health Organization, Sexual health is a state of physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being related to sexuality; it is not merely the absence of disease, dysfunction, or infirmity.
Sexual healthiness requires a positive and respectful approach to sexuality and sexual relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination, and violence. For sexual health to be attained and maintained, the sexual rights of all persons must be respected, protected, and fulfilled.
Sexual health includes a sense of self-esteem, personal attractiveness, and competence, as well as freedom from sexual dysfunction, sexually transmitted diseases, and sexual assault/coercion. Sexual health affirms sexuality as a positive force, enhancing other dimensions of one’s life.
Being sexually healthy means:
- Understanding that sexuality is a natural part of life and involves more than sexual behavior.
- Recognizing and respecting the sexual rights we all share.
- Having access to healthy sexual information, education, and care.
- Making an effort to prevent unintended pregnancies and STDs and seek care and treatment when needed.
- Being able to experience sexual pleasure, satisfaction, and intimacy when desired.
- Being able to communicate about sexual healthiness with others including sexual partners and healthcare providers.
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