Dr. Theresa Tam, an infectious disease expert who currently serves as Canada’s chief public health officer, advised couples on Wednesday to wear masks when having sex to avoid spreading COVID-19.
“Sex can be complicated in the time of COVID-19, especially for those without an intimate partner in their household or whose sexual partner is at higher risk for COVID-19,” Tam said in a statement.
“The lowest risk sexual activity during COVID-19 involves yourself alone,” she added.
However, those who are planning to have sex but are at risk of catching the coronavirus or don’t live in the same home should be “skipping kissing and avoiding face-to-face contact or closeness (and) consider using a mask that covers the nose and mouth.”
Tam added that alcohol consumption and other substances should be limited “so you and your partner(s) are able to make safe decisions.”
She also said that the transmission of the coronavirus via reproductive fluids is of a “very low likelihood” but noted that condoms should still be used.
There are certain measures people should keep in mind when it comes to sexual intercourse.
- Monitoring yourself for symptoms of COVID-19 and not having sex if you or your partner is experiencing symptoms;
- Limiting your use of alcohol and other substances so you and your partner(s) are able to make safe decisions;
- Skipping kissing and avoiding face-to-face contact or closeness;
- Consider using a mask that covers the nose and mouth;
- Being aware if you or your partner may be at higher risk for more severe outcomes of COVID-19. This includes:
- people of any age with underlying medical conditions;
- people with compromised immune systems; and
- people living with obesity.
- As usual, engage in safer sex practices, including using condoms and knowing your own STI status and the status of your partner.
“Remember as with all social interactions, try to keep your number of close contacts low if possible,” she said.
Canada has over 130,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 while the Philippines has nearly 230,000.