Your sexual and reproductive health can have a strong impact on your physical, emotional, social, and mental well-being. Taking care of your sexual health means getting to know your body, what's normal for you, and when something is wrong. This knowledge is integral to proper preventative care and being overall sexually healthy.
"It is not merely the absence of disease, dysfunction, or infirmity. Sexual health requires a positive and respectful approach to sexuality and sexual relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination, and violence." —World Health Organization
When you think of sexual health, your brain likely goes to preventing unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections/diseases (STIs/STDs).
If you are sexually active and are not looking to become pregnant or get your partner pregnant, there are many contraceptive options available to you. Some of the most effective options include the commonly used oral contraceptive pills, arm implants, and IUDs. While effective at preventing pregnancy, most birth control methods do not prevent STDs.
On the other hand, both external and internal condoms protect against STDs. Regardless of your contraceptive method, those who are sexually active with more than one partner or who have recently switched partners should receive regular STD testing.
Along with pregnancy and STDs, there's another layer to monitoring your sexual health. For men, exams for testicular cancer are important, and for women, breast and cervical cancer exams should not be skipped.