Could I have a sexually transmitted infection?
If you have had unprotected sex (without a condom), there’s a chance you could have caught a sexually transmitted infection (STI)
Arrange to get tested if you:
- Haven’t got symptoms, but are worried you might have an STI
- Have symptoms, such as an unusual discharge
- Feel something is wrong
If you’re sexually active, either stop having sex or make sure you use a condom until you know for sure whether or not you have an STI
If you do have an STI, using a condom will help prevent passing it on. Your sexual partners should also get tested.
You can get free, confidential advice and treatment from your GP or specialist clinics in your area, even if you’re under 16.
Hospitals often have sexual health clinics (also known as GUM clinics), which test for and treat STIs.
There are also lots of places that are set up especially for young people.
Most STIs can be easily treated, so don’t be scared of having a test and finding you do have an STI.
If you have sex without a condom or the condom splits or comes off, you’re also at risk of getting an STI.
If this happens and you’re worried you have caught an STI, you can get confidential help and advice in your local area, as well as free testing for STIs, at:
- A sexual health clinic (GUM clinic)
- Some community contraceptive clinics
- Some GPs
I've had sex without a condom
If you have had sex without a condom or the condom splits or comes off, there’s a risk of both pregnancy and STIs.
The best thing to do is act quickly. The quicker you act, the sooner you can prevent a pregnancy or get tested for an STI.
You can get if you have sex without a condom or the condom splits or comes off.
In this case, to avoid pregnancy you can either:
- Take the emergency contraceptive pill, sometimes called the morning-after pill, up to 72 hours (3 days) or 120 hours (5 days) after having unprotected sex, depending on the type of pill
- Have an intrauterine device (IUD), sometimes called a coil, fitted up to 120 hours (5 days) after having unprotected sex
Take a pregnancy test if your next period doesn’t arrive when you expect it to.
If you’re having sex, don’t rely on emergency contraception to stop you getting pregnant.
There are lots of contraceptive options you can choose from.
Talk to a nurse or doctor at a clinic or GP surgery about what time of contraception is right for you.
I've forgotten to take my pill
You may not be protected against pregnancy if you have forgotten to take your pill.
This depends on the type you’re taking, how many doses you have missed already and how many pills are left in the packet.
Keep taking the pill and see your doctor, nurse or pharmacist as soon as possible for advice. Also use condoms for extra protection.
If you have trouble remembering to take a pill every day, you could consider using another method of contraception, such as the contraceptive implant, contraceptive injection or IUD.
Find out more about the different contraceptive methods and medications affecting them on the NHS website.
I think I might be pregnant
The first thing to do is find out for certain by taking a pregnancy test. The sooner you do this, the better.
There are lots of places where you can have a free pregnancy test and get confidential advice, even if you’re under 16.
- Some pharmacies
- A sexual health clinic (GUM clinic)
- A contraception clinic
- Some young people’s services – call the national sexual health helpline on 0300 123 7123 for details
- Some GP surgeries
- Brook centres – for under 25s
Find out more about doing a pregnancy test on the NHS website
If you’re pregnant and it’s unplanned, you’ll need to decide if you want to continue the pregnancy.
If you decide to have an abortion, the sooner this is done, the easier and safer it is.
But you might want to take time making your decision, which is why it’s important to find out if you’re pregnant as soon as possible.
Nobody needs to know you’re pregnant until you’re ready to tell them.
You can ask to see a female doctor if it would make you feel more comfortable.
If you decide to continue with the pregnancy, you should start your pregnancy (antenatal) care as soon as possible.
This includes health checks for you and your baby. Your GP can discuss this with you.
Find out more about antenatal care on the NHS website.
I've been pushed into sex
If someone has forced or persuaded you into a sexual situation you’re uncomfortable with, help is available.
You can call the national sexual health helpline free on 0300 123 7123. Your call will be treated with sensitivity and in strict confidence.
You can also contact a sexual assault referral centre (SARC), where you can get specialist support and medical care if you have been sexually assaulted.
A sexual assault can happen anywhere, including in your home, and is more likely to be carried out by someone you know rather than a stranger.
You can also ask at your GP surgery, contraceptive clinic or sexual health clinic.
Find out more about what to do if you have been sexually assaulted, or it’s happened to someone you know.
Information from the NHS website is licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0
Leicester Sexual Health
Leicester Sexual Health offer a range of services including:
- Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) Screening and Treatment Services
- Free pregnancy testing
- Emergency contraception
- HIV PEP and PREP
- Psychosexual counselling
- Sexual violence
- Domiciliary Services
For more information on Leicester Sexual Health including clinics, visit their website