Most students having unprotected sex


ALMOST THREE-quarters of Irish students surveyed have had sex without a condom, with 13 per cent citing impairment due to alcohol as the reason for having done so, a survey has found.

The survey, published today, was carried out by the Union of Students in Ireland.

It found 85 per cent of students surveyed were sexually active and of that figure 73 per cent had had sex without contraception, such as a condom or a dental dam, which protect against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and infections.

The survey found 77 per cent of males and 72 per cent of females had had sex without a condom or dental dam. Asked why they did not use a condom, 20 per cent of respondents said it was because they or their partner were using another contraceptive, while a further 20 per cent said it was because they were in a long-term relationship.

Fourteen per cent cited “spontaneity” with 13 per cent citing “impairment due to alcohol” as the reason they hadn’t used a condom. Respondents could select more than one answer for this question.

The survey was conducted in January and involved 1,000 students from Irish colleges and universities.

The launch marks the beginning of “Shag Week” (Sexual Health Awareness and Guidance Week), when the USI will distribute 40,000 “Shag packs” in colleges and universities across the country. Each pack contains a condom, a sachet of lubricant and information on contraception, STDs and fertility.

The HSE crisis pregnancy programme is supporting the campaign with “Think Contraception” branded Eco Cabs, which will be distributing protection packs.