In Sweden, society's attitudes towards teenage sexual relationships are liberal, and sexual and reproductive health issues are given high priority. Family and sex education has been taught in schools since the 1950s. The age of sexual consent is 15 years. Since 1975, abortion has been free on demand. Contraceptive counselling is free, easily available at family planning and youth health clinics. Screening for genital chlamydial infection is performed at these clinics, thus providing a "one stop shop" service. Condoms and oral contraception are available at low cost, emergency contraception is sold over the counter. Teenage childbearing is uncommon. However, sexual and reproductive health problems are on the increase among young people. During the 1990s, a period of economic stagnation in Sweden, schools have suffered budget cut backs. Sex education is taught less. Social segregation, school non-attendance, smoking, and drug use have increased. Teenage abortion rates have gone up, from 17/1000 in 1995 to 22.5/1000 in 2001. Genital chlamydial infections have increased from 14,000 cases in 1994 to 22,263 cases in 2001, 60% occurring among young people, and with the steepest increase among teenagers. Thus, a question of major concern is whether and how adolescent sexual behaviour has shifted towards more risky practices during the late 1990s.
Seven out of ten of the adolescents included in the study had experienced unsafe sex with a new partner. Afterwards, 48% worried about STD and 31% worried about pregnancy. Teenagers calculate the risk of contracting STD from the looks and the reputation of a new partner. Young women and men agree, that both share responsibility for the use of condoms, but more often the young women initiate the use of condoms. Many participants found it more embarrassing to buy condoms than to use them. The participants hoped for improved education in schools and less expensive condoms. The adolescents possessed good knowledge concerning how to protect themselves, but changes in attitudes are needed. School and youth clinics play important roles in this process.
Quantitative alcohol interviews conducted as part of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Native American Supplement revealed very high rates of alcohol use among American Indian and Alaska Native active crack and injection drug users (IDUs). Of 147 respondents who completed the alcohol questionnaire, 100& percent had drunk alcohol within the past month, almost 42& percent reported that they drank every day, and 50& percent drank until they were drunk one-half of the time or more. Injection drug users (IDUs) demonstrated the highest frequency and quantity of alcohol use in the past 30 days. A significant positive association was also found between crack and alcohol use in the past 48 hours (c(2)=5.30, p
In the development process of establishing a Campus Health Resource Centre, a health needs assessment of 691 students was conducted at the University of Manitoba.
Students were surveyed by their peers to identify the health education needs of this population. The process of the health needs assessment is described and the results have formed the basis for a range of programs and services offered on campus.
Students showed interest in learning about stress management, cold and flu prevention, ergonomics and lifestyle (exercise, nutrition) issues.
Of note is low interest in topics generally thought to be important to students such as contraception, safer sex, and STD/AIDS prevention.
Violence is associated with HIV and HIV risk behaviors among female sex workers (FSW). However, few studies assess multiple forms of violence and multiple HIV risk behaviors to build a comprehensive picture of how violence is implicated in HIV risk. Using respondent-driven sampling, 754 FSW were recruited in the Russian Federation. Surveys collected data on lifetime exposure to client, police, intimate partner, and pimp violence, as well as recent HIV risk behavior in the forms of injecting drug use (IDU), and inconsistent condom use with intimate partners and clients. Multivariable log-binomial and Poisson regression were used to assess associations between violence and HIV risk behavior outcomes. Lifetime client (31.7%), police (16.0%), intimate partner (15.7%), and pimp (11.4%) violence were prevalent. IDU (10.7%) and inconsistent condom use with intimate partners (45.1%) and clients (22.5%) were common. Intimate partner violence (IPV) and client violence were associated with IDU (ARRIPV 2.12, 95% CI 1.10, 4.10; ARRClient 2.75, 95% CI 1.19, 6.32), IPV and police violence were associated with inconsistent condom use with intimate partners (ARRIPV 1.10, 95% CI 1.01, 1.19; ARRPolice 1.11, 95% CI 1.01, 1.21), and IPV and police violence were associated with inconsistent condom use with clients (ARRIPV 1.49, 95% CI 1.02, 2.17; ARRPolice 1.65, 95% CI 1.19, 2.29). Each perpetrator-specific type of violence was associated with a unique set of HIV risk behaviors. Comprehensive violence prevention programming that addresses multiple perpetrators of violence against FSW, including clients, intimate partners and police, is critical for reducing sexual and drug-related HIV risk in FSW.
Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), especially the Chlamydia trachomatis bacterial infection, a common cause of infertility, are highly prevalent in developed countries, and a worrying problem in North Norway, where the incidence of chlamydia twice the Norwegian average. Seventy percent of reported chlamydia cases are found in people below 25 years of age, and although its spread could be controlled with proper prevention, young people are more aware of the risks of unwanted pregnancy than their risk of acquiring a STD. Information and Communication Technologies, including, the Internet, social media and/or smartphones, should be valued for sexual health promotion for their potential to engage young audiences. And in these media, avatars guarantee anonymity to users when handling sensitive information. The main objective of this project is to achieve that North Norwegian youngsters become more aware of STDs through the use of popular technologies among young people.
A Virtual Clinic for Sexually Transmitted Diseases (VCSTD) will be developed. The VCSTD will provide early guidance and reliable information sources concerning reproductive health, delivered in a novel and innovative way to the younger population. The VCSTD consists of an "avatar" supported intervention in a serious gaming and e-learning environment, which will bypass direct physical access (in person) to reliable medical information, as well as allowing the youngsters to share that information in social media, and thus helping the VCSTD to be disseminated to more people.Data analyses will be conducted on publically available health data relevant to STDs in Troms and Finnmark, like the absolute number of chlamydia tests, the amount of emergency contraception medication sold, and the number of abortions. Also, usage data of the system and experiences of usefulness will be explored through participants' voluntary responses to a feedback form available in the VCSTD.
This study will examine the usefulness of an online public health intervention that aims to promote healthy sexual practices among North-Norwegian youngsters. If shown to be effective, the intervention could prove to be an affordable and widely accessible intervention to decrease risky sexual practices in younger population.
The research topic of barebacking emerged in the mid-1990s. Since then, a multitude of studies, largely from the United States, have produced invaluable knowledge of factors that help explain the behaviour among men who have sex with men (MSM), and that may contribute to HIV risk reduction programming and advice to counsellors working with barebackers. Given the scant empirical research about barebacking among European MSM, we conducted a survey among 3,634 MSM recruited through a web community in Nordic countries. The objectives of the study were twofold: to describe the sexual activities associated with barebacking behaviour at last sexual encounter, and to evaluate the relationship of barebacking with relevant variables. Men who reported barebacking (n=356) and men who did not (n=3,278) were compared. On the basis of the results of the analyses, the socio-sexual profile of barebackers drawn was one that is at increased risk of acquiring human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and other sexually transmitted infections due to their sexual practices, particularly unprotected anal intercourse, but also group sex and rimming. In a multivariate logistic regression analysis, the likelihood of engaging in barebacking was higher for MSM who reported more frequent HIV testing (odds ratio (OR)=5.16), a higher number of female sex partners (OR=16.80), using gay cruising places (OR=1.51) and gay chat rooms (OR=2.11).
The Russian Federation is currently experiencing one of the fastest growing HIV epidemics worldwide. The objective was to identify sexual risk factors for recent heterosexually-acquired HIV infections.
A case-control study of recent HIV infection was conducted in the regions of Altaiskiy Krai, Krasnoyarskiy Krai, Saratov Oblast, and Tverskaya Oblast. Data from 166 participants who did not report recent injection drug use were analyzed (19 male cases, 22 male controls, 67 female cases, 58 female controls). Independent risk factors for HIV infection are reported as adjusted odds ratios (AOR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI).
Risk factors were unprotected sex with an HIV-positive/status unknown regular partner (among women only: AOR 5.4, 95% CI 2.1-13); a regular sexual partner who was an injection drug user (AOR 3.6, 95% CI 1.5-8.5); 5 or more sexual partners (among men only: AOR 2.7, 95% CI 0.66-11); unprotected sex with a partner who had a diagnosed sexually transmitted infection (STI) or signs/symptoms of an STI (AOR 6.4, 95% CI 1.1-38); and undiagnosed signs/symptoms of an STI (AOR 3.4, 95% CI 1.5-7.6).
These data provide evidence of bridging between the injecting and noninjecting populations. Concomitant STI seem to have a major role in fueling the Russian HIV epidemic.
Compared to other young Canadians, youth in the Northwest Territories (NWT) suffer disproportionately from negative sexual health outcomes, including high rates of sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancies. This study aimed to identify the self-perceived barriers and facilitators to positive, empowered, and safer sexual health that impact female youth in the NWT.
A total of 12 females aged 15-19 who live in the NWT were recruited through purposive sampling to participate in semi-structured, face-to-face interviews. Inductive coding and thematic analysis of transcribed data occurred using Atlas.ti.
Overall 4 main themes influenced the sexual health of these women: sexual health knowledge, relationships with the self and others, access to quality sexual health resources, and alcohol use/abuse.
Recommendations for future action include improving the content and delivery of sexual health education, enhancing parent-adolescent sexual health communication, providing workshops to empower young women to assert themselves within relationships, and supporting an environment that normalizes youth sexuality.
Cites: J Health Psychol. 2008 Oct;13(7):864-918809636