SEXUAL HEALTH IN SOUTH AFRICA IS QUESTIONED
By: Mbalenhle Sithebe
More and more South Africans are having unsafe sex and have no fear of getting infected with HIV/AIDS.
This is according to the latest household survey by the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC).
The survey found that an overall 52.9 percent of the participants have never used a condom. There is evidence that South Africa has shown a scary decline in condom use.
Love Life Senior Executive Manager, Portia Serobe said that South Africans’ sexual behaviour was “worsening across all age groups”.
Among men aged between 25 and 49, condom use dropped to 36.1% from 44.1%. Over the same period, women also reported using condoms less.
The number of people infected with HIV has increased four times amongst young people aged 15 and 24. It has been postulated that younger girls dating older men has contributed to this increase.
This might be because the perception is that females maturefaster than males. “It is not a bad picture that an 18-year-old is dating a 24-year-old man,” said Dr Khangelani Zuma from (HSRC).
When student across South Africa’s Universities were asked on Facebook why they thought condom use was declining in South Africa,they said:
Lindokuhle Simelane That can be attributed to a whole number of reasons, alcohol being a huge factor, people tend to be careless when they are drunk, Second reason people don’t see the use of a condom as a form of a contraceptive, they would rather have unprotected sex and wake up in the morning, reach for morning afters, April 4 at 8:02am.
Zandile N Ndlozi Zah most of da time its women carelessness because we all know that without a condom you might fall pregnant or HIV or both at the sa me time. I also think people spread the disease because they sleep around without a condom while they know their status.
April 4 at 8:36am ·
Mandisa Sithole some people trust too much, they even forget about the risk they are putting themselves in.
Jamez Sithebe because we are not scared of HIV anymore like we use to.
April 4 at 9:49am ·
Siya Gupta Shenge Nevertheless the state’s aim to educate young peeps hasn’t been a success because young black peeps like sex without a condom. For proof look @ child grants queues and young girls, and you’ll realize where majority of our taxes are being spent on! It’s Worthing noting that you know you don’t like a condom, do active research and speak to your doctor. There is a scarce pill which if used correctly reduces chances by more than 78% some wealthy peeps live on it and recommend its usage!
April 9 at 6:16pm ·
Scott Burnt said that although unsafe sex increases the chances of getting HIV, it might not have everything to do with the increased number of HIV positive people in South Africa.
“For example the number of new infected people decreased. Our country has the best treatment programmes so people who are on treatment are living longer, unlike in the past when people died decreasing the number of HIV positive people. They live longer and are calculated in every survey,” Burnt said.
“Treatment is prevention itself,” said Serobe.
She said that people who are HIV negative but are at a high risk to get infected like sex-workers should be on ARV’s as prevention, “because ARV’s decrease your chances to get HIV by 96 percent”.
The survey also revealed that HIV/AIDS occurrence was eight times higher among teenage girls aged between 15 and 19 at 5.6%, than among boys in the same age group, where prevalence was just 0.7%.
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi announced that the Department of Healthwas going to give out flavoured condoms to young people at universities.
But young people don’t think there would be any difference.
“Flavoured condoms have been around for a while now, just that they were not free! Yes just like everything else, there will be a lot of hype about them, but over time I believe the hype will die down,” said Lindokuhle Simelane.
Serobe said that people should not doubt free condoms because they have been tested to be safe.
Careless sexual behaviour remains a problem in South Africa especially amongst young people. The youth continue to engage in unprotected sex, have multiple sex partners and engage in random sex influenced by alcohol and drugs.
HIV councillor Thembi Mvelase said that she thinks the new contraceptive implant that lasts for three year will increase HIV infections as young girls were already afraid of pregnancy more than getting HIV. That is why some use abortion as a form of contraceptive,” said Mvelase.