There are more than 372,700 coronavirus cases in 194 countries and territories according to the World Health Organization, as of March 24, 2020.
Nearly 16,000 people have died worldwide, the WHO reports.
But can you have sex? It’s a valid question, particularly when the New York City Health Department sees fit to ask it in a recent memo issued to New Yorkers.
The memo, which is written rather candidly, outlines the basics:
- Know how it spreads
- Have sex with people close to you (including yourself)
- Take care during sex
- Skip it if either of you isn’t feeling well
- Prevent HIV, other sexually transmitted diseases, and unplanned pregnancy
In short, the answer is complicated
Does that exactly answer the question of the day – can COVID-19 spread through sex? The answer reminds me of the good old days of Facebook when you could set your relationship status to: it’s complicated. Or is it?
So much about COVID-19 remains unknown at this point. Researchers are scrambling to learn as much as they can about the virus in an attempt to contain it as efficiently and effectively as possible.
While the World Health Organization does not quantify coronavirus as sexually transmitted, it is widely known that the virus is transmitted when viral droplets travel from one person to another.
Coughing and sneezing seems to be the most common culprit, but let us pause for a moment and recognize that the act of kissing is, quite literally, an eloquent game of spit swapping.
As doctors warn about being so much as within close proximity (we’re talking 6 feet, according to warnings by the CDC) to someone who is infected with COVID-19, one could simply assume that yes, the acts associated with sexual intercourse can put you at risk for spreading and/or catching the virus.
“Until more information is available, common sense is king. Wash your hands. If you don’t feel well, stay in. If you’ve got 72 rolls of toilet paper in your home in preparation for all of this, good for you. If not, you’ll be okay.”
What can we do to stay safe?
As Americans are navigating the toilet paper crisis, re-learning proper hand-washing practices, and realizing the ramifications of just how gross our cell phones are, dating may take a back seat in this season. That being said, dating, relationships, and the act of sex are all a solid, healthy form of stress relief, which is not to be forgotten in uncertain times.
A few things to keep in mind if you’re currently in, or considering entering into a sexual relationship:
Wash your phone before swiping right
No, seriously. Girl, wash your phone. Think carefully about the places you put it down and how quickly you pick it up. Then consider the last time you washed it properly, if ever.
Feeling sick? Stay in.
This may seem obvious, but many of us know the excitement that goes into preparing for especially a first date. You got a blow out, did your nails, maybe splurged on a new outfit or some sexy panties. Then it happens. The cough. Or the sneezing. Or even a general sense of not quite feeling 100 percent. Cancel the date. Save the undies for next time. Your future beau will thank you.
Carefully consider those one-night stands
I’m not here to kink-shame, but let me just go on record to say that in most cases, the reality is you’re literally less likely to have had enough time to get to know a person and whether they are at risk or possibly infected if you sleep together on the first date. That’s all I’ll say on the topic because, well, you do you.
Proceed with caution in long-term relationships
We all know the scene where Monica tells Chandler she’s “fin-d” to have sex. She’s so stuffed up and sick she can’t even properly pronounce the word “fine.” We laugh. And then guess who gets sick almost immediately? Let’s just practice some common sense, friends.
Overall, that’s a good way to approach the question in the first place. Is COVID-19 sexually transmitted? In short, we don’t know.
But until more information is available, common sense is king. Wash your hands. If you don’t feel well, stay in. If you’ve got 72 rolls of toilet paper in your home in preparation for all of this, good for you. If not, you’ll be okay.
Calm down and stay safe. And, as always, I’m here for you if you need me.