Urgent help
Illustration of two people holding hands

Sexual Health

Sexual health means your state of physical, mental and social wellbeing in relation to sexuality. Looking after your sexual health is an important part of taking care of your mental and physical health. The Go-To is here to help you educate yourself about sexual health, from contraception to STIs, and how this can impact your mental health. Read on to find out more about what services are available to support you in North Yorkshire.

What is Sexual Health?

Sexual health means your state of physical, mental and social wellbeing in relation to sexuality. Maintaining good sexual health means having a respectful approach to sex and relationships. Sex should be physically safe and should not be forced on you.

YorSexual Health is a free and confidential service, running across York and North Yorkshire. You can find the available North Yorkshire sexual health services on their website or phone 01904 721111. There are also other services on their website, including counselling, HIV support services, condom ordering, learning difficulties, Yorkshire MESMAC, sex workers, and LGBTQ.

Sexual Health and Coronavirus

Coronavirus has brought a lot of uncertainty into daily life. With lock down and social distancing measures currently in place, it’s particularly important to take care of your mental well being, and this includes your sexual health too.

Here is up to date information on Coronavirus from YorSexual Health.

Also take a look at Brook’s website for sexual health help and services during Coronavirus.

For more information about Coronavirus, visit our Coronavirus Information page.

Contraception

Contraception comes in different forms, and helps to protect you from getting pregnant. Visit the Sexwise website for more information about contraception.

Condoms are the only method of contraception that also protects you from STIs. You can order them for free online via YorSexualHealth, or buy them from local supermarkets or in your local pharmacy. Many pharmacies in North Yorkshire offer them for free to under 25 year olds.

If you use the contraceptive pill (or patch or ring) check now how many you have left and contact the place you get it from as soon as possible if you think you might run out in the next week or two. If you do run out, make sure you have another method of contraception available.

Contraception during Coronavirus

If you think you need emergency contraception, do not delay seeking help. If you have been instructed to self-isolate or have COVID-19 symptoms, call your nearest pharmacy or call YorSexualHealth 01904 721111 for guidance on how to access emergency contraception.

Emergency Hormonal Contraception (EHC) is classed as a priority service. EHC is free and available through your local pharmacy, or YorSexualHealth. For contact details, visit the North Yorkshire County Council website.

Long Acting Reversible Contraception (LARC) fittings in GP Practices have currently stopped. Effective alternative methods of contraception can be offered through a remote consultation. You can contact your GP Practice for more information.

All GP practices can be contacted to discuss any concerns about new or existing contraception methods.

For more information about Coronavirus, visit our Coronavirus Information page.

STIs

STI stands for Sexually Transmitted Infection. Visit the Sexwise website to find out more about STIs, their symptoms and how to avoid getting one.

If you don’t have any symptoms but have had unprotected sex and want an STI test, you may be able to book an appointment or order one online and have it sent to your home to complete and return.

If you are experiencing symptoms of an STI, it is important that you see a healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment. Please call the YorSexual Health central booking line 01904 721111 to make an appointment.


Getting More Help

Talking to family and friends about your worries can help you feel more supported. You might want to talk to someone outside the family like a GP, teacher or mentor at school, or even a friend’s parent. Choose someone you trust and if you find it difficult to talk about how you are feeling, you could write them a letter or send them a text. Support is also available through Childline, Compass BUZZ, Kooth and Recovery College Online.

Childline

Childline provides a free and confidential telephone service for children and young people up to the age of 19.

Visit Childline website Call 0800 1111

BUZZ US

Compass BUZZ offers a confidential text messaging service, called BUZZ US, to young people aged 11-18 across North Yorkshire.

Visit Compass BUZZ website Call 07520 631168

Kooth

Kooth online counselling is a free, safe and anonymous service for 11-18 year olds where young people can chat 1-2-1 with counsellors.

Visit Kooth website

Recovery College Online

The Recovery College Online provides a range of online educational courses and resources to people with mental illness.

Visit Recovery College Online website

Getting Urgent Help

If you’ve seriously injured yourself or taken an overdose call 999 or get immediate medical advice from NHS 111.

If you are in a crisis and feel like you can’t cope, speak to somebody straight away. Search below for help or see the Urgent Help page for contact details for the North Yorkshire single point of access Crisis Service.


Things you might find useful

One You

NHS One You provides tips, tools and support to help improve your health, including sexual health.

Visit One You website

Brook

Brook provides clinical services, digital support, counselling and information helping young people to take charge of their sexual health and wellbeing.

Visit Brook website

Sexwise

Sexwise provides honest advice about contraception, pregnancy, STIs and more.

Visit Sexwise website

The Go-To is not responsible for content on websites or apps mentioned on the site. Always read the app’s Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy to see how your data may be used.