Sexually Transmitted Infections

STIs and sex on drugs (chemsex)

Drugs can keep you awake and horny for much longer than you usually would be, and can also make it difficult to cum.

If you find you’re having sex for longer and with more partners then you normally would, this will increase your chance of picking up sexually transmitted infections (STIs), so it’s really important that you get checked at least every three months at a sexual health clinic.

More guys = more STIs

It can be really easy to have a higher number of partners when high at a chillout or sauna.

Guys might be horny for a whole weekend, and using smartphone apps means it can be easy to find new guys or parties.

The more partners you have, and the more those partners overlap with each other, the greater the chance of picking up an STI.

Even if you’re using condoms for fucking, it can still be easy to pick up bacterial STIs like gonorrhoea or syphilis.

Harder, longer, sorer

Drugs can keep you awake, horny and hard for much longer, so you may find yourself having sex for long periods of a time. This can damage the skin on your cock and arse (but you might not feel it until the day after, because the drugs will mask the pain).

This can make you more susceptible to picking up an infection.

HIV, condoms, and undetectable status

You may find that at parties or saunas, some guys won’t be using condoms.

This might be because they’re living with HIV and have an undetectable viral load, so aren’t at any real risk of passing on HIV. However, it could be that not everyone at the party who is living with HIV is undetectable.

Most guys catch HIV from someone who doesn’t know they’re positive, and guys who have just caught HIV (and probably don’t know yet) can be very infectious. Even if someone says they’re negative and have been tested, they could have just caught HIV, especially if they've been having sex without a condom with other guys.

Unless you can feel confident that a guy is undetectable and on meds, or is negative and on PrEP, if you’ve fucked someone without a condom you may want to think about taking PEP as soon as possible.

Hepatitis C and group sex on drugs

Hep C is mostly passed on through blood.

We think that guys who are into group sex on drugs might be particularly at risk of hep C, because being fucked for a long time, using toys or fisting may damage the arse and cause minute amounts of bleeding.

This blood can then transfer on the surface of cocks, hands or sex toys, and infect someone when these are used to fuck someone else’s arse.

Reducing the number of guys in a group sex setting, using a fresh condom for each partner and washing thoroughly between partners may help reduce your risk. For more info, check the THT hep C pages or take our hep C knowledge quiz.

Sharing injecting equipment for slamming also poses a big risk for hep C. Read our guide to safer slamming.

Next section: Morning after ›› 

Published: 10/11/2015
Next review: 10/11/2018

Terrence Higgins Trust uses cookies to improve your experience of our websites. For more information or to change the use of cookies, please click here.

Accept and Close