Sexual health is an important part of overall health and well being and includes:
- healthy relationships
- self esteem
- decision making
- maintenance of reproductive health
Sexual health is a basic human right and is important across the lifespan. Everyone, including youth, has the right to the information and skills needed to prevent negative sexual health outcomes, including sexual abuse/assault, unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections. As children and youth begin to develop their sexuality, support and resources that promote positive and healthy sexuality and informed decision-making are important.
In order to promote positive sexual health, it is recommended that parents:
- Be aware that they give messages about sexual health from the time their child is born, whether they talk to their child or not. When young children first ask about their body parts and facts of life, it is important the first answers that they get are the right ones.
- Be aware of what is going on with your child or teen. Know the books they are reading, the music they are listening to and what they are doing on the computer. Discuss their relationships with their peers and keep an open and ongoing dialogue with your child.
- Ensure your child or teen has accurate and correct information about sexuality and sexual health. If your child is taught about sexual health at school, ensure you follow up and discuss at home as well.
If you need more information or additional resources regarding sexual health, please contact
your local public health unit.