Why Do Your Doctors Need To Know If You’re Sexually Active?

Doctors ask a lot of questions. It’s part of their job, and I know it can be a little awkward to discuss certain things with your doctor. I mean, they’re your doctor, it’s not like they really know you personally outside the office.

But how come doctors need to know if you’re sexually active? That’s what you’re talking about on the message boards. Let’s see what y’all had to say:

NDLove asked:
“Why is it really that important for doctors to know if you are sexually active or not? I know they say it affects your health, but I’m not sure why. I’m scheduled to meet with a new doctor about birth control pills. I am sexually active, but we’re both safe partners. I have no pain, no discomfort. I don’t see how it would be different if you were or if you weren’t?”

alliecia said:
“One reason they ask women is that if you are sexually active then there is a minute chance you are pregnant, and certain medications and x-rays could be a problem for that.”

del677 said:
“If you can’t be totally honest with your doctor then the doctor can’t help you and you might want to try a different doctor, or go with a supportive friend who’s not so afraid to talk about these subjects. If you’re sexually active the doctor will know what common STIs to look for. Believe me you’re not the only one who’s sexually active! If you say ‘No’ the doctor might actually be surprised! If you say ‘Yes’ that’s the answer the doctor expects to hear.”

xxnicci92xx said:
“Telling your doctor that you are sexually active is a way for them to check your health additionally. Just because you don’t notice any symptoms doesn’t mean that there is a 100% chance that you don’t have anything. Also, it’s not just for checking STDs, but the health of your cervix, ovaries, etc. Not to mention it’s good to be honest with your doctor so that they can help you to the best of their ability!”

flamingoccm said:
“There are a number of reasons why telling your doctor if you’re sexually active is important. First of all, sexual activity comes with its own category of risks and medical conditions. For example, someone who is not sexually active (and has never been sexually active) is unlikely to be pregnant, have STDs, etc. Someone who is sexually active may be pregnant, they are more likely to be taking contraceptive pills, they’re more likely to have an STD, and knowing a patient is sexually active gives the doctor an idea of what can and cannot be done. There are a number of medications that cannot be taken if there is even a chance the patient is pregnant. Studies like xrays, scans with contrast dye, etc. cannot be done (or really shouldn’t be done unless it is absolutely necessary) if the patient is pregnant, or suspects that they may be pregnant. STDs frequently do not show ANY symptoms in women until the infection has spread and turned into Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).”

It’s really important to be super honest with your doctor because they’re dealing with your health. I understand not wanting to tell them everything, but they’re not asking about your sex life because they want to know details. They’re asking because having sex does affect your health.

Having sex puts you at risk for STDs and pregnancy, no matter how careful you’re being. Medications and procedures, should you need any, can be affected if there is a possible chance of pregnancy. Many STDs don’t show symptoms either so it’s important to be honest and get tested because you could have an STD without even knowing it.

They’re not asking for fun, they’re asking for medical purposes. In general, it’s just best to be honest with your doctors about everything whether it’s about your sexual activity or not. They are there to help you, not judge you. Lying to your doctors could potentially harm your health, and we definitely don’t want that. Don’t be embarrassed to talk to your doctor. Trust me, they’ve heard it all.
Do you think it’s important to tell your doctor if you’re sexually active? Have you ever lied about it? Tell us in the comments!

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Posted in: Health
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  • kari_rowland

    My doctor asked me if I was sexually active and I said no but I know I am. I want to tell my doctor without my mom in the room.

  • karuna_gohar

    Is there any doc to help me

  • Maggie

    I told my doctor the true – I was not sexually active. She kinda looked me from head to toe and said that I could trust her and didn’t have to lie to her. I laughed and asked why she thought I was lying. Apparently people my age have sex more often then I thought… she also said I was beautiful so she assumed, which ended up making me feel awkward (cause I don’t take compliments well. She was very professional and trustworthy and helpful).

    • Yeah, I received similar looks of skepticism when I told my doctor that I wasn’t sexually active. I don’t think it’s because I was pretty or anything, but the age factor is understandable.