Some infections and conditions can be passed on during sex or are caused by existing STI’s but are not technically classed as STI’s themselves. They can still seriously affect your health so it’s really important to be aware of these too. These include bacterial vaginosis, molluscum contagiosum, public lice, scabies and thrush.
In this section
Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is a common vaginal infection. It happens when there is an imbalance of good vs. harmful bacteria in the vagina. It is not an STI but can increase your risk of STIs and can get worse after sex.
Molluscum contagiosum is a harmless viral infection that appears as raised pink spots on the skin. It can occur at any age. It is not a sexually transmitted infection (STI) but can be passed on through sexual contact when it appears in the genital area.
Pubic lice (crabs)
Pubic lice are tiny parasitic insects that live on coarse human body hair, such as pubic hair. They are around 2mm long and aren’t that easy to see. They are sometimes also known as ‘crabs’ because they have two large front legs that look similar to the claws of a crab.
Scabies is a contagious and very itchy skin condition caused by tiny parasitic mites. The mites are smaller than a pinhead, burrow into the skin and lay eggs. This is a common condition with no scientific evidence relating it to personal hygiene and people shouldn’t feel embarrassed getting advice.
Thrush, also known as Candida, is a yeast infection affecting the genitals that is common for women and less so for men. It is not a sexually transmitted infection (STI) but can develop or get worse after sex.