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Sexual Health

Let’s Talk About Sex


Sexuality is a huge part of a human being and it is very apparent through your college years. No matter whether you identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or straight the two things you need to remember are RESPECT and SAFETY. Whoever you like, love safe sex.

Also remember not everyone is sexually active in college so remember never to pressurise anyone into having sex and also you yourself should never feel under pressure to have sex.



All contraceptive methods are very effective and most are 99% effective - when used correctly and consistently. A Dual Protection approach to contraception gives the best protection against pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

Simply put the only way not to get pregnant, or contract a STD or STI is Abstinence - i.e. not having sex. If you do make the choice to have sex, be responsible and practice Safe Sex. What is Safe Sex? Safe Sex means enjoying sex to the fullest without transmitting, or acquiring, sexually related infections. 

There  is a wide range of contraception available these days, but remember only some forms  protect you from STIs so make sure you are fully protected  so that you can relax and enjoy sex! If you are ever confused or need help choosing contraception or  finding out  which best suits you  call up to Ruth your VP Welfare or to any of the nurses in the CIT  Medical centre for advice.

Be responsible and use condoms. Contraception is often something both guys and girls might not know much about. Here in the Students' Union  I  provide information on contraception options and Sexual Health. Practice safe sex, use condoms.

We have condoms available in the Students’ Union office at a low cost price and we give them out for free a lot during the year.  A lot of people may call for a chat or to buy stationery so there is never a need to feel  embarrassed calling in. Be proud of yourself for being so responsible. 

There are lots of other forms of contraception and protection that you may wish to consider. These include dental dams, female condoms, diaphragms, intra-uterine devices, implants, patches and vaginal rings. For more information go to


  • Think you know how to put on a condom correctly check out this fun interactive guide from Durex
  • gives  a great guide on everything you need to know about contaception for males and females 
  • Take a look at this video from on how to put on a condom.


Here are some more useful links on contraception choices:

Emergency Contraception

If you make a mistake with your contraception or have unprotected sex, contact your doctor as soon as possible. The main method of emergency contraception is the morning-after pill. This is a special pill that must be taken as soon as possible and within three days (72 hours) of having sex.

Emergency contraception is a secondary form of contraception – it is used when other forms (e.g. a condom) have failed or not been used at all. If you do find yourself in the situation where you need to get emergency contraception you can get it over the counter in most pharmacies. Unfortunately it can range in price from €9 to €45 with Boots being quiet expensive. If you are a medical card holder and want to avail of the morning after pill you need to go to a doctor to prescribe it. Remember you can go to our very own doctor or prescribing nurse in the Medical Centre here in CIT.

If you need the Morning after pill at the weekends, please contact South Doc as the CIT Medical Centre will be closed Telephone: 1850 335 999. E-Mail:

Sexually transmitted diseases

There are many sexually transmitted infections you can get and not show any symptoms so it’s important to know what’s what. When you're sexually active, having regular STI tests is important for your health and the health of people around you. Remember that some STIs show no visible symptoms. You won’t always know if you need a check-up but if you had unprotected sex even once you may be at risk of having an STI. Over 60% of sexually transmitted infections are diagnosed in the 20-29 year old age group – that means a lot of students fall within the high risk category. To protect against STIs a condom must be used each and every time you have sexual intercourse. To be fully protected, dental dams and condoms must be used during oral sex.

Regular STI Screenings are very important to ensure you are clear of any STIs. A lot of STIs have NO symptoms, and some can cause infertility in both men and women.You can get an STI screening in the CIT Medical Centre every Tuesday and Thursday, or if you feel it is urgent you can ask for one anytime during the week. It is FREE if you are a medical card holder or with the nurse or €10  for the doctor. So you have no excuse! GET TESTED!  Call in or Phone 0214335780

Take a look at the following links for information on all those nasty STIs you might be carrying:

Unplanned Pregnancy

Girls, if you have had unprotected sex or if you are not sure if your contraception has worked properly, then you could be pregnant.

If you think you may be pregnant you can confirm your pregnancy by doing a pregnancy test or visiting a doctor. Pregnancy test is widely available from chemists and chain store supermarkets so you can buy them very discreetly if you wish.

Free pregnancy testing is available from:

Address: 34 Paul Street, Cork City Centre
Phone: 021 4277544
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2:30pm (Monday/Tuesday/Friday),
1:30pm – 4:00pm (Wednesday),
11:00am – 6:00pm (Thursday),
Saturday by appointment

123 Patrick Street
(021) 427 0445
Monday – Friday, 10am – 5pm, Saturday 2pm – 4pm

16 Peters Street , Cork

Mon-Fri: 9.00 to 17.00

Helpline: 021 427 6676

Fax: 021 427 4370



Penrose House,
Penrose Quay,

021 422 0490 / 021 422 0491


Opening Hours:
Mondays 9.00am - 3.00pm; Wednesday 2.00pm - 6.00pm; Thursday 9.30am - 6.00pm

  • Medical Card holders can get free pregnancy testing from their GP or family planning clinic.

You can freetext LIST to 50444 for a list of services in the area of unplanned and crisis pregnancy.


Sexuality & Coming out 

Sexuality refers to your sexual orientation or your sexual preference for people of the same or opposite sex. Figuring out your sexuality and who you're attracted to is a normal and important part of life but can also be  a very tough time to go through. For more information on  sexuality and for advice on how to tell people you’re gay, lesbian, bi-sexual or transgender take a look at some of the following links:


Communication is the most  important part of any relationship (be it platonic, sexual, professional). It for both of you to be honest and to be open with each other. You will both have a much better relationship because of it.

Both Men and Women can find themselves trapped in abusive relationships. If you  find that you are being abused by your partner then it is not a healthy relationship and you are not safe. Abuse has many different forms. Click here and see if you can recognise any of these forms of abuse happening to you.

If you think you are being abused, tell a friend or family member or  a doctor or nurse.Take  a look at the following links for some advice:



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