Doctor's Advice | Did I get a germ from Oral Sex?
Q I met a girl at a club one night and we had crazy, wild sex. She performed oral sex on me and asked me to do it for her. I never did that kind of thing before, but she made me feel so good that I did it for her. She showed me what to do. Since then, I have this itching and numbness and tingling on my face. I do not see any rash or sore or anything else. Could I have caught a germ in my mouth from oral sex?
A Yes, all forms of sexually transmitted infection can be acquired and passed on through oral sex.
Oral sex is a contentious issue and is stigmatised in Jamaican society, but the reality is that many people are doing it, though they keep it a secret for fear of being ridiculed.
However, since it poses significant risk for sexually transmitted infections and HIV (if there are cuts, bruises in the mouth/genitals), a discussion of safe oral sex practices is warranted.
The usual practice of covering the penis with a condom for intercourse should also be practised during oral sex to reduce the transmission of infection. The person performing the act has a slightly higher chance of contracting an infection than the receiving partner.
The female genital (vulva) area can be covered with a square of plastic (dental dam), saran wrap, or you can cut open a female condom and use it to cover the vulva. Dental dams can be sourced from a medical/dental supply company or pharmacy.
The symptoms you described could likely be due to the herpes virus, so visit your healthcare provider as soon as possible.
I have two boyfriends. Which one do I choose?
Q I'm 19 years old and just left high school. My problem is that I have two boyfriends, both living in Kingston. One smokes a lot and it's irritating. He doesn't have any reasoning ability, either. He says that he loves me, but he never shows it. I don't think he cares about me at all. He doesn't call or text, I have to do all of that if I want to hear from him. I want to leave, but I love him. The other one is laid-back, cool, caring, and loving, but doesn't know how to talk to people. He even gives good advice and encourages me on my career path. I love both of them and I can't choose. Please help me!
A Clearly, you do not know what you want, and perhaps the same is the case with these men. This is common in young people who have not yet defined their identity nor established a set of values to live by. These years are often filled with confusion about career, life goals, relationships, etc.
Please bear in mind that though some men may have more than one girlfriend at a time, they find it difficult to cope with the idea of a woman having more than one boyfriend at the same time. This often creates jealousy, which may lead to violence. Do not forget that multiple sex partners also increases the risk of cervical cancer and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, so practise safe sex.
Ultimately, you have to make the final decisions about your life, so sit down and compare the pros and cons of the situation. Best of luck!
Flesh hanging from my vagina
Q I am 53 years old and in good health, but a few months ago I noticed that there is a piece of flesh hanging out of my vagina. It is getting bigger and feels uncomfortable when I walk. Since the problem started, I have stopped having sex with my husband as I am uncomfortable. I have an appointment at the clinic, but that will not be until March. Can you say what this flesh is? What caused it? Could it be cancer? I am worried.
A Sex will be difficult with any type of vaginal protrusion and should not be attempted until the problem is solved. The most common causes of the above are not usually due to cancer, but are caused by weak pelvic floor muscles and stretched ligaments due to childbirth. These weak muscles and ligaments cannot adequately support the organs and tissues in the pelvis, and so they collapse into the vagina. The most commonly seen is uterine (womb) prolapse, where this organ falls through the vagina. There are various degrees of severity, as the organ can be inside the vagina or be completely outside it. The bladder and parts of the bowel can also collapse into the vagina and these can have serious complications, so visit a gynaecologist as soon as possible to have the problem sorted out.
What is the best water
Q Doc, what do you think about these spring water that they have for sale in the supermarkets? I hear that they are no different from the water in the pipe. What is the best water to drink? I have also heard about alkaline water. What is it? Is it good for cancer?
A The subject of water for consumption and bathing is vast. There are many conflicting opinions and research is still going on; however, here are a few important points to consider:
ï Everyone is entitled to safe drinking water.
ï The local Bureau of Standards tests and approves all drinking-water products before they are allowed on the market, so your fears can be allayed.
ï Drinking water has different levels of acidity depending on the source, purification process and whether there are any additives.
ï Alkaline water has a pH (level of acidity) of around 7.8 to 9; piped water about 6 to 7. The higher the number, the more alkaline. Cancer cells have been found to thrive in an acidic environment (pH less than 7). However, the human body is designed to maintain blood pH between 7.35 to 7.45 regardless of the pH of one's diet. There is no scientific evidence which confirms that alkaline water prevents or treats cancer. However, excessive consumption can disrupt the pH balance in the stomach leading to ulcers. The best idea is to drink water from a variety of sources with varying pH levels.
Does my four-year-old daughter have worms?
Q Doc, my four-year-old daughter grinds her teeth at nights. Does this mean that she has worms?
A There is definitely a strong association between teeth grinding (bruxism) and worm infestation. This is thought to be due to the toxic effect of the worm secretions and the physical discomfort felt mostly at night when the body is relaxed. This condition also runs in families.
However, there are other causes which needs to be ruled out before attributing the problem to worm infestation. These include :
- Psychological problems and stress.
- Response to pain from ear ache or teething.
- Hyperactivity during the day.
- Certain medications such as antidepressants.
- Medical conditions such as calcium/ magnesium deficiency, allergies, hormone problems.
- Improper teeth alignment.
The solution is to find and treat the underlying cause.