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Safe Sex During COVID-19: Science-Based Tips

Medically reviewed by Ika Villanueva Caperonce, MD · Infectious Disease · Makati Medical Center

Written by Jan Alwyn Batara · Updated Mar 30, 2021

Safe Sex During COVID-19: Science-Based Tips

With the community quarantine in place, you and your partner might be spending more time together. One way that couples are using this time is to reconnect and be more intimate with each other. But are there any special safe sex and COVID guidelines you need to follow?

How is COVID-19 transmitted?

COVID-19’s primary form of transmission is through droplets. These droplets are tiny particles of liquid that contains the virus.

These droplets come from a person’s nose or mouth. Whenever a person coughs, speaks, or sneezes, they can spread these contaminated droplets. When another person inhales these particles or if they get into a person’s mouth or nose, there is the possibility that they could get infected with COVID-19.

This is why everyone is encouraged to wear face masks, which prevent any droplets from exiting or entering the mouth or nose. Additionally, any surfaces that these droplets come in contact with can get contaminated. This is why disinfection and frequent hand washing should be top priority.

The virus is present in feces, so it is possible that sharing the same bathroom with someone positive for COVID-19 can increase your risk of becoming ill.

What increases your risk of being infected?

Here are some of the risk factors involved when it comes to COVID-19:

  • Touching your face without washing your hands
  • Prolonged exposure to a person with COVID-19
  • Being in close proximity to other people
  • Sharing an office or a small space with other people
  • Using public transportation
  • Being inside an enclosed vehicle with other people
  • Sharing a bathroom with someone who tested positive for COVID-19

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Is it possible to get COVID-19 from having sex?

You might have noticed that sexual contact is not present among the ways that COVID-19 can be transmitted. This is because there are no confirmed cases of sexual transmission of the disease.

While COVID-19 has been detected in the semen of those recovering from the virus, there is no evidence that it can infect another person. No presence of COVID-19 has also been found in vaginal fluids, so based on the information we have, the disease cannot be transmitted through sexual means.

However, this does not mean that you can’t get sick during sex. Due to the intimate nature of sex, social distancing is not possible during intercourse. Some people also might find that wearing faces masks during sex can be uncomfortable.

People who have multiple sex partners can also put themselves at risk since they might not know if their partner has been in contact with someone who has the virus. This means that to avoid contracting COVID-19, it would be a good idea to not just practice safe sex, but also take additional precautions.

So what are the guidelines in preventing COVID and having safe sex?

Safe sex and COVID guidelines to keep you safe

Here are some safe sex and COVID infection guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Avoid having sex with someone who lives in a different house. This increases your risk for infection, since you might not know if your partner has been in contact with someone who is positive for COVID-19.
  • Avoid having multiple sexual partners.
  • If your partner shows any symptoms of COVID-19, do not have sex with them until they receive an official diagnosis.
  • Avoid kissing during intercourse.
  • Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before and after having sex.
  • Using condoms and dental dams can help lower the risk of COVID-19 and STDs.
  • Disinfect the place where you had sex.
  • Make sure that any sex toys you and your partner use are clean before using them.
  • If you are the one showing any symptoms, isolate yourself until you can be certain that you are no longer sick.
  • Video calls or sexting are safe options to avoid physical contact.

Always remember to follow the basic guidelines when it comes to COVID and safe sex. By lowering your risk of being infected, you are protecting both you and your partner from the disease. It is always important to practice safe sex, and to be extra careful as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.


Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Medically reviewed by

Ika Villanueva Caperonce, MD

Infectious Disease · Makati Medical Center

Written by Jan Alwyn Batara · Updated Mar 30, 2021

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