Maybe you only use condoms sometimes, or seldom, or don’t use them at all. Maybe you want to lower your risk of getting HIV, but condoms don’t always work for you. In that case, PrEP can be something that can help you. Using PrEP means taking a medicine that lowers the risk of getting HIV. PrEP stands for pre-exposure prophylaxis.

  • PrEP gives a very high level of protection, but not completely 100%.
  • Forgetting a pill = less effective protection. Take your pills every day.
  • PrEP does not protect against chlamydia, gonorrhea or syphilis. Condoms are the only thing that lower the risk of getting sexually transmitted diseases.
  • PrEP can have side effects.
  • It is important to get check-ups while taking the medicine. Ask your doctor to check up the current recommendations from “Referensgruppen för antiviral terapi”.

PrEP is an approved medical product in Sweden, and it is part of the high-cost protection system. This means that you never pay more than SEK 2 200 per year for prescription medicine. PrEP is avaliable all over Sweden for men who have sex with men. However, there is a waiting list in some areas. Contact your clinic for more information.

Some tips:

It’s easy to forget to take your medicine. Here are some ways to help you remember:

  • Set a daily alarm on your mobile phone. Either with the regular alarm clock or a special medicine app.
  • Keep your medicine in your bag, or hang a small container on your keyring.
  • Keep your medicine in a place where you will see it every day. Maybe next to your toothbrush or coffee maker?


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Main Topics

 

Alcohol & Drugs  

 

Facts  

 

Selling Sex  

 

Support & Info  

 

Testing & PrEP  

 

Alcohol & Drugs /
Support & Advice

RFSL Stockholm has a counsellor service focusing on two issues, sex work and drug use. Read more about this free service here. The social services in your town or municipality (kommun in Swedish) can also help you prevent and stop drug abuse. You can ask them for counselling and other social support. Often, your kommun can also offer anonymous counselling over the telephone. You can also visit AA (Alcoholics Anonymous), CA (Cocain Anonymous, Mötesnamn “CA HBTQ”) NA (Narcotics Anonymous) who sometimes have special meetings for homosexuals, bisexuals and transgender people. You can find more information about where to find help and support atInformation for young people on Drugsmart.
 

Alcohol & Drugs /
Erection issues?

Not being able to stay hard is an issue for many people. There are prescripted drugs for this, if there is an actual physical problem. It is meant for people who have a problem getting their penis hard and/or keeping it hard. For other people, it can give the opposite effect, or give an erection that is so hard you need a doctor to get it down. Some of these drugs can be deadly in combination with poppers, or with medicines for heart problems or vascular (blood vessel) problems. It is a bad idea to buy copies, so called generic versions, on the Internet. If you have erection problems or want to keep your penis hard for a long time, talk to a doctor. Do not self-medicate. There are many different reasons for erection problems. Often, mental and social issues affect your ability to get sexually excited or to get your penis hard and keep it hard. A cock ring can help with keeping it hard. If you often have problems with this, talk to a doctor who can see if there are any physical reasons, and give you medical help if you need it. There are many different medicines that are said to be similar to these drugs. Your doctor can help you choose the right one for you. Always follow the dose recommended by the doctor.
 

Alcohol & Drugs /
Other drugs

It is not a good idea to take drugs before you meet a client. Drugs make your judgment worse. Never accept anything from a customer or anyone else, because you can never know what you are actually being given. Have you thought about drinking less alcohol, taking less drugs, or stopping completely? Are you using a medicine in a destructive way? Are you worried that a friend is drinking too much? Sometimes it is a good idea to talk to a professional who can give advice and support like RFSL Stockholms counsellor. Contact him at samtalsmottagning@rfslstockholm.se, or instagram.com/chemsexmottagningen. Amphetamine Amphetamine is a chemical drug that stimulates the central nervous system. It can be found as pills or as a powder, and it can be swallowed, snorted (inhaled through the nose) or injected. When you take amphetamine, your brain gets an increase in the synaptic activity of dopamine and noradrenaline. This gives you feelings of intensity, heightened energy and self-confidence. Amphetamine also speeds up your heart rate and gives you higher blood pressure. During the high, you often stop thinking about eating and sleeping, and get a higher sex drive and more energy to start with. If you use amphetamine often, the positive feelings will go away, and instead you will feel withdrawal symptoms and extreme tiredness. It can be very different how much amphetamine there is in the pills or the powder, and this can lead to unwanted overdoses. If you overdose, you risk collapsing or dying because of the effect on your heart and […]
 

Facts /
Condoms

Using a condom is an effective way of reducing the risk of HIV transmission and of many other types of STIs. Condoms give you the freedom to have great sex with anyone you fancy, regardless of whether or not you live with HIV. Some may choose not to use a condom in a relationship, while others might feel it’s an interruption in a steamy situation. However, a condom is a good way of showing that you take care of yourself and  that you respect the people you have sex with. What do you personally think is good about using a condom? GENERALLY Condoms come in different sizes, fits, flavors and materials. Try different brands, sizes and materials and see what feels best for you. Lubrication makes anal sex much more comfortable. Remember only to use a water or silicone-based lubricant with a condom. Condoms aren’t only for penises, they also fit a wide variety of toys for safer sex there as well. Remember to change condoms if more than one person is being fucked by the same penis or dildo. Always bring your own condoms in a variety of sizes when you meet a buyer. Do not reply on the buyer in this case. Then you know that the condoms are “fresh” (look at the back for expiry date) and undamaged. If you keep condoms in your wallet, replace them every month or if the protective wrapping is damaged. Also, if you are the bottom, make sure that the buyer keeps the condom on the […]
 

Facts /
Lubrication

No matter if you have anal or vaginal sex, lubrication usually makes the sex more comfortable. It’s reducing the risk of minor wounds and injuries on the mucous membranes inside the ass or vagina. Lube can, of course be used for other types of sex as well. Silicon-based lube also makes an excellent massage oil. Cremes that contain fat (such as ointments, skin lotions, massage oils and other oils), weaken latex condoms and can make them break easily. Instead, it’s better to use either a water or silicon-based lubricant if you’re using a condom. Water-based lubricants are thick and may dry out after a while, so you’ll need to apply more as needed. Silicon-based lubes are thinner, don’t dry out and last a long time, even if you don’t use a lot. Both can be washed off with soap and water, even though silicon lubes are slightly harder to rinse off. If you prefer to use oil based cremes you can always use plastic condoms, they are not usually avaliable in regular stores so you might have to order them online. You can buy lube at the pharmacy, online and at some supermarkets. Sex shops and condom shops generally have a bigger selection. Feel your way and try out different kinds of lube, and see what’s best for you.
 

Facts /
Syphilis

SYMPTOMS Syphilis does not have any symptoms to begin with, so you could have the infection without realizing. Visible symptoms arise in the form of small painless sores on or near the genitals, anus or mouth and/or a rash, fever, nausea and tiredness. The sores heal in four to eight weeks. The sores could, however, be so small that they can’t be seen. When the sores heal, the bacteria remain in the body, which means there is a risk of passing the infection on to others. You may also experience a skin rash at a later stage. Seven to 10 weeks after the first sores you may get new symptoms; fever and swollen lymphatic glands are common symptoms. However, there are not always symptoms, or they are so mild that they go unnoticed. These first two phases are called early-stage syphilis, and during this time there is a high risk of passing the infection on to others during sexual contact. If syphilis goes untreated it gradually enters a phase called late-stage syphilis, and this is when the infection can cause damage to the heart and brain, for example. Treatment may prevent further damage, but any damage that’s already been done is permanent. HOW IS SYPHILIS PASSED ON? Syphilis is transmitted through skin contact and through most kinds of sex. The infection can also be passed from mother to fetus. Syphilis can also be transmitted via blood. Since the infection is easily transmitted and it is hard to know if you have it, it’s important to […]
 

Selling Sex /
The sex itself

Overview Just like sex means many different things to different people, selling sex is also very different for different people. Whatever the reason, it’s always good to have some advice on how to make the sex act feel more ok. The tips below come from people who have experience of selling sex. Anal sex If you are being penetrated, there are ways of making anal sex feel better, even if you are not sexually excited. Most importantly, try to relax your body and not be tense. Some find it easier to “warm up” first with a little lubricant and a finger, for example. Do it before meeting a client, if possible. Some positions give you more control of the situation. This can be a good idea, especially with a new customer or a large penis. One position that gives you better control is if you “ride” the customer. Which positions are comfortable also depend on the shape of the penis. Find what works for you. You decide the tempo, even if someone has paid you for sex. If you want to stop having sex, do so. You always have the right to stop. Just give the money back and leave. If you are doing the penetrating, it’s important to have the right condom size. You can read more about different sizes of condoms under “Facts”. There is only one way to have safer anal sex – use a condom from the beginning to the end of the sex act. Make sure to always bring condoms […]
 

Selling Sex /
Before you meet

There are some things to think about before meeting a client, no matter if it is your first time selling sex or if you have done it before. First, think about what you are okay with doing, what rules and limits feel good for you. What types of sex are you okay with selling? Is kissing okay or not? How will you start talking about safer sex? When you know the answers to those questions, you can make a deal with a client. Not before. And stick with the rules you have made for yourself, even if the client wants to pay more for things you have decided you do not want to do. When it comes to safety, we have collected some tips from sex workers. If the client sounds drunk or high on the phone, or if they are drunk or high when you meet, you may want to leave. Do not meet client when you have taken drugs or drunk alcohol, it will be more difficult for you to see if a situation is dangerous. If possible, that is. Find out as much information about the client as you can before you meet, and save the information. Call a friend before meeting the client, and tell your friend the address, the phone number and other information about the buyer, and how long you will be meeting them. Call your friend afterwards too. Make sure that your mobile phone battery is charged (maybe an extra battry pack?) and that you have money on […]
 

Selling Sex /
To stop selling sex

For some people, it takes an active decision to stop selling sex. Others may just phase it out gradually. For the money? Most people who sell sex do it for the money. Because we need money for rent, food and other things, it’s difficult to stop selling sex if you can not get money from somewhere else. If you feel that you want to stop selling, but you need the money, you need to start thinking about the situation and make a plan. It’s good to think about your alternatives. Could you study and get student loans? Are there any jobs around that you are interested in and qualified for? If a first step is to become less financially dependent on selling sex, you could set a goal that half your money could come from selling and half from somewhere else, until you reach the day when you can get all your money from somewhere else. But of course, if you do not have complete grades, or a residence permit, it’s difficult to start studying. And it’s not easy to get a job, even if you have experience and education. If you sell sex to finance a dependency on alcohol or drugs, it’s important to work on those problems. It’s not easy to become free of alcohol or drugs, but it is possible if you want to and work hard. En.rodaparaplyet.org has information on alcohol, drugs and counseling, if you want to drink less or take less drugs, or stop completely. Click the heading at […]
 

Support & Info /
COUNSELLING

People who have sold sex have very different experiences of it. And the experience of selling sex can change and be different from time to time. If you have questions about selling sex and your health, send us an email, please use samtalsmottagning@rfslstockholm.se. Your email will go to a counsellor at RFSL Stockholm. He will help you get answers to your questions by consulting a network of sex workers and experts.
 

Support & Info /
Skåne

Advice, support, counseling for LGBTQ people who have sold or bought sexual services. Sex for money is more common among gay men, lesbians, bisexuals and trans people of all genders. But it is often something we do not talk about with anyone. Sex for money can make you extra exposed to risks. Things can get worse if you keep everything secret, and if you do not know where to get help if you encounter problems. If you need advice, support or treatment – contact us. Read more here. We provide: • free condom subscriptions • anonymous HIV and STI testing with quick results • support and advice on safer sex • counselling • help if you want to contact other local authorities or places for support • advice and support via chat RFSL Rådgivningen Skåne Drottninggatan 36 (map) 040-6119951
 

Testing & PrEP /
PrEP

Maybe you only use condoms sometimes, or seldom, or don’t use them at all. Maybe you want to lower your risk of getting HIV, but condoms don’t always work for you. In that case, PrEP can be something that can help you. Using PrEP means taking a medicine that lowers the risk of getting HIV. PrEP stands for pre-exposure prophylaxis. PrEP gives a very high level of protection, but not completely 100%. Forgetting a pill = less effective protection. Take your pills every day. PrEP does not protect against chlamydia, gonorrhea or syphilis. Condoms are the only thing that lower the risk of getting sexually transmitted diseases. PrEP can have side effects. It is important to get check-ups while taking the medicine. Ask your doctor to check up the current recommendations from “Referensgruppen för antiviral terapi”. PrEP is an approved medical product in Sweden, and it is part of the high-cost protection system. This means that you never pay more than SEK 2 200 per year for prescription medicine. PrEP is avaliable all over Sweden for men who have sex with men. However, there is a waiting list in some areas. Contact your clinic for more information. Some tips: It’s easy to forget to take your medicine. Here are some ways to help you remember: Set a daily alarm on your mobile phone. Either with the regular alarm clock or a special medicine app. Keep your medicine in your bag, or hang a small container on your keyring. Keep your medicine in a place where […]
 

Testing & PrEP /
Introduction

Condoms provide by far the best protection against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but they still don’t provide 100% protection. Even if you always use a condom, it may be a good idea to get tested for STIs. There are different STIs and they can affect you in different ways. Untreated STIs have a negative impact on the body, sometimes without the person noticing. If you have an STI it could also increase your susceptibility to other STIs and HIV. So it’s a good idea to get tested regularly, even if you don’t have any signs or symptoms of an infection. By getting tested, you take control of your own health. For people selling sex, we recommend to get tested at least every three months. Everyone has an HIV status, but not everyone is certain what it is, whether or not they are carrying HIV. The only way of taking control and avoiding uncertainty is to get tested. There are many benefits of having this control, from avoiding uncertainty for yourself and your sexual partners, to being able to start effective treatment at the right time if it turns out you do have the HIV virus. Testing is also an excellent opportunity to talk to a knowledgeable advisor and get answers to any queries you may have about sex and safer sex. You are entitled to free testing and treatment for HIV and most sexually transmitted infections. Testing has a short shelf-life which means that it is outdated by the next time you have sex. Regular […]
 

Testing & PrEP /
PEP

PEP (Post Exposure Prophylaxis) can be a savior in an emergency when things don’t according to plan, like a condom splitting. PEP is a relatively effective treatment that reduces the risk of HIV being transmitted, but it does not offer 100 % protection. PEP can be given if an HIV negative has had unprotected sex with an HIV positive person in the past 36 hours. The sooner you get PEP, the better. The PEP treatment is not a single pill but a 30 day treatment. PEP treatment is available Venhälsan at Södersjukhuset in Stockholm and the ER at Karolinska Sjukhuset in Huddinge.