Pelvic Inflammatory Disease - Prevention
You can prevent
pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) by using condoms.
This helps protect you from
sexually transmitted infections (STIs) that cause PID.
If you have had
chlamydia (a common cause of PID) one time in the
past, you might now be more sensitive to this bacteria. A second chlamydia
infection can cause more irritation and pelvic organ damage that is worse than
before. For this reason, it's very important that you use condoms to avoid
being exposed to STIs. After having had PID, using a condom every time you have
sex lowers your risk of recurrent PID and
ongoing (chronic) pelvic pain.
Practice safe sex
Preventing an STI is easier than
treating an infection after it occurs. Abstaining from sexual contact is the
only certain way to avoid exposure to STIs. Consistent condom use will greatly
reduce your risk of an STI infection that can lead to PID. Even if you are
using another birth control method to prevent pregnancy, use condoms to reduce
- Talk with your partner about STIs before
beginning a sexual relationship. Find out whether he or she is at risk for an
STI. Remember that most STIs, like chlamydia and herpes, can infect you without
causing symptoms, so only test results can tell whether your partner is
infection-free. Some STIs, such as
HIV, can take up to 6 months before they can be
detected in the blood.
- Be responsible.
- Avoid sexual contact if you have symptoms
of an STI or are being treated for an STI.
- Avoid all intimate
sexual contact with anyone who has symptoms of an STI or who may have been
exposed to an STI.
- Don't have more than one sex partner at a time. Your risk for
an STI increases if you have several sex partners at the same time.
Use a condom every time you have sex.
This lowers your risk of getting an STI or PID. You must put on a condom before
beginning any sexual contact. Use condoms with a new partner until you are
certain he or she does not have an STI.
You can use a male or
female condom. A female condom is a good option for a woman whose partner does
not have or will not use a male condom. For information about male and female
how to use a condom.
which increases your risk for vaginal and pelvic infections.