By Raveena Hargun
The Florey clinic provides a free confidential integrated sexual health service in Reading, Wokingham, and West Berkshire. It provides a state of physical, emotional, mental, and social wellbeing. The clinic provides information on the different methods of contraception that are available and how they can be used.
In addition to this, they do a full sexual health screening service including tests for chlamydia, HIV, Gonorrhoea, and syphilis testing it only takes 60 seconds.
The clinic will provide accurate information, confidential care, and support for all aspects of your sexual health. All their services are free and there are no prescription charges.
Florey clinic’s sexual health and contraceptive advice are based on 21A Craven Rd, Reading RG1 5LE is open Monday to Friday from 9 am to 4:30 pm – website: safesexberkshire.nhs.uk
STI is a sexually transmitted infection that is generally acquired by sexual contact this can cause bacteria, viruses, and parasites which can be transmitted from person to person in the blood or semen, or vaginal and other bodily fluids.
You can order a home testing kit sent to you confidentially or go to Florey clinic and it’s completely free.
HIV (Human immunodeficiency virus) is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system. If HIV is not treated, it can lead to AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome).
HIV is treated with antiretroviral medicines, which work by stopping the virus from replicating in the body. This allows the immune system to repair itself and prevent further damage.
Chlamydia is a bacterial infection. The bacteria are usually spread through sex or contact with infected genital fluids (semen or vaginal fluid). Symptoms include pain when urinating, unusual vaginal discharge, and pain in the tummy or pelvis. Pain during sex or bleeding after sex. Chlamydia is treated by antibiotics.
Gonorrhoea is caused by bacteria and is mostly passed from one person to another by sexual contact including oral, anal, or Virginal intercourse. The symptoms include a thick green or yellow discharge from the vagina or penis when peeing and in women bleeding between periods. Did you know that around 1 in 10 infected men and almost half of infected women do not experience any symptoms.
Some people need help and support, especially young teenagers that are under the age of 18 and above.
They will need help and advice because they might need the emergency contraceptive pill. Especially when we have the highest teenage pregnancy rate in Reading. Florey clinic gives you advice on how to keep safe.
What to be aware of when you use drugs for sex:
Mixing drugs and sex can be potentially harmful, also, drugs and alcohol can give you lower inhibition. What to think about if you use the hook-up app or chatroom with people online? This is important because you need to know how to keep safe especially if you are using a chatroom.
You need to know how safe it is whether they are taking any pictures – do not trust people that have disappearing messages or screenshot blockers. Sometimes it is best not to meet people that are in the chatroom.
People getting paid for sex need to make sure nothing happens to them, and they are being careful.
Florey clinics keep safe section, they will give more information on sexual exploitation and what to do if you think you or someone else may be at risk of child sexual exploitation.
In addition to this, they also help people who have been sexually assaulted and raped and guide victims towards how to report the matter to the police.
There is a sexual assault referral clinic that offers a safe, discreet, and caring environment as well as provide you with a well-trained Crisis worker through the SARC (Sexual Assault Referral Centre).
Even though you are in SARC they will provide you with a forensic examination by a specialist forensic doctor who treat you with respect and will ask for your consent before examining you.
They will also be crisis support throughout your initial visit and will arrange to follow-up appointments and telephone advice as well as introduce you to other necessary services.
This is the website for SARC: www.solacesarc.org.uk – Helpline: 0300 130 3036
You can also contact Reading Trust House Sexual Abuse Centre. This is the website RTHSAC: Trusthousereading.org – Helpline: 0118 958 4033