"I let my son know that if and when he starts having sex, he needs to use condoms. I want him to keep safe and healthy. I’m glad to know there are ways he can get condoms when he needs them."
Joseph, father of 17-year-old Tony
Talk About Condoms
Talking with Your Teens about Condoms
Talking about condoms is an important way to help teens keep safe and healthy as they grow up. When teens have sex, they could get pregnant or diseases people get from having sex.
You should know that young men and women aged 15 to 24 are 4 times more likely to get gonorrhea or chlamydia than anyone else. These infections are the main reason people end up not being able to have children later on in life. And thousands of youth are dealing with HIV.
You can make a difference. You can help keep your teen safe and healthy.
All teens need to know about birth control and condoms.
It doesn’t matter whether they are gay or straight, male or female, or how old they are. You can’t assume they are getting this information from their schools. And what they are hearing from friends may not be correct.
Get the help you need.
When condoms are used along with another birth control method, teens are less likely to get pregnant or end up with life-changing health problems. You can learn what you need to share with your teens from a health care provider, at the library, or online. If you feel like you can’t talk about it yourself, get help from a health care provider or someone else you trust.
Let your teen know where to get condoms and other methods.
That way if they do have sex, they will be protected. There are family planning clinics in most cities and towns. In California, there’s a new Condom Access Project (CAP) designed so that teens can get free condoms when they need them.
If you find condoms or birth control methods that belong to your child:
- Take a deep breath.
- Remember, this shows your child is being responsible.
- Think of it as a chance to talk with and encourage your teen to keep safe and healthy.
Find out more about how to get condoms.
California's new Condom Access Project (CAP) is designed to lower the chances that teens will get sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
- Teens will be able to go online and ask for a package of 10 condoms.
- They can go to teen-friendly clinics and youth-serving agencies to get free condoms.
Using condoms the right way is the best way to lower the chances of getting an STD during sex. Condom use also helps in preventing unplanned pregnancy. Free condom programs have increased condom use among teens who already have sex. These kinds of programs have not led to teens having sex more often.