Dr. Rachael Ross Shares Sexual Health Resolutions
If you’re like most people, then you probably made a New Year’s resolution or two. Perhaps it has something to do with your finances. Or, maybe, you’re more concerned about losing weight and improving your health.
But what about your sexual health?
It’s just as important, says Dr. Rachael Ross, the Chicago-based sex therapist who is known for her open and honest conversations about sex.
“If you ignore your sexual health, it can cause a huge decline in your general and mental health,” she says. “In 2014, it’s important to maintain your sexual health.”
Because HIV/AIDS is the leading cause of death among Black women, Ross advises everyone to “get tested and make sure their partners are tested.”
“Assume your partner is HIV positive until you’re notified otherwise,” she suggests. “If people infected with HIV get started on medication early, they can live until their in their 70s. Then people starting thinking of HIV as a chronic illness, like diabetes, as something they can live with and manage. We don’t want that.”
In an effort to reduce the rate of STDs among Black women. Ross encourages everyone to practice safer forms of sex, which may include outercourse.
“This type of sex involves more grinding,” she says. “For some women, especially young women, the best part of sex is the grinding before penetration even starts. There are ways for both of you to orgasm without penetration.”
Ross also advises women be open and honest with both new and steady partners about their sexual health.
“You have to make it clear: ‘I don’t have sex without condoms and I require an STD test,'” she says. “Couples need to get tested together. Pick up two kits together at the drug store. That way, you’re not saying ‘I don’t trust you,’ but rather, ‘I love you and I want to make sure we do this thing right.’ So it’s not a blame situation. It takes the edge off.”
If you prefer to find your HIV status in the comfort of your home, Ross recommends OraQuick, which is the first FDA-approved oral HIV test. It detects antibodies to HIV-1 and HIV-2.
“This is the first time in the history of HIV that you can actually get a test at midnight and get the results 20 minutes later,” she says. “The idea that, in my own free time after dinner or a movie, we can get tested together is really hot to me. It’s tough to make everyone else as excited as I am, but it’s really good.”
About Dr. Rachael Ross
As a family doctor and a sexologist, Dr. Rachael Ross has been heralded as “The next Dr. Ruth, the nationally renowned sexual therapist who pioneered frank sex talk” by Chicago Tribune. Energetic, beautiful and a no-holds-barred speaker, Dr. Rachael is captivating audiences across the U.S. on television, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and through numerous publications.