Lack of information and sex education, the obstacles to condom use in Mexico
6 out of 10 Mexican do not use condoms – Photo: File photo/EL UNIVERSAL

Lack of information and sex education, the obstacles to condom use in Mexico

28/12/2019
15:03
Mexico City
El Botiquín.mx
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Condoms are one of the best contraceptives to prevent STIs and unintended pregnancies

Six out of every 10 Mexicans do not use condoms in sexual encounters due to lack of information, domestic violence, and prejudices about this contraceptive, said Nicole Finkelstein, director of AHF Mexico.

“We have to work in demystifying condom use, mainly in people between 15 and 29 years old, which is the group in which STIs are transmitted the most,” asserted Finkelstein.

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She said that according to data of the National Center for the Prevention and Control of HIV and AIDS (CENSIDA), in Mexico, in 2018, every day 41 persons were infected with HIV. This number is bigger than in 2017 when 33 persons got infected each day.

In order to reduce these numbers, Finkelstein said, it is necessary to create awareness in the population through education and prevention.

Mexico has the first place in the world on unintended pregnancy in teenagers between 15 and 19 years old. Even, 38.5% of the teenagers who get pregnant do so in their first sexual relation.

According to data provided by the ONG, Mexico City is the second city in the country with more persons with HIV. Quintana Roo is in the first place.

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Blanca Martínez, the coordinator of fast tests in AHF Mexico, mentioned that condoms are one of the most effective methods not only to prevent pregnancies but to prevent STIs like HIV/AIDS, syphilis, gonorrhea, and others.

However, she added that one of the main reasons why youths do not use condoms is disinformation, domestic violence, “or because it doesn’t feel the same.”

Finkelstein regretted that, despite the importance of condoms, in Mexico, the budget for health has been cut which results in a fewer amount of condoms available for free for the population.

The AHF director regrets that government agencies have not carried out efficient programs for the use of condoms during sexual intercourse.

To counteract these statistics, AHF Mexico began the program “Always in Trend” with which they distributed 100,000 condoms in all the country. 60,000 of them were distributed in 12 subway stations in Mexico City for free.

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“We want people to use condoms but not only that, but we also want them to know how to use them,” said Finkelstein.

Likewise, Blanca Martínez stressed the relevance of educating young people and teach them the importance of using condoms correctly “for it is a playful and pleasurable tool used for self-love,” she said.

In addition to this program, the organization has mobile units that perform health tests, give talks, and distribute condoms during the year.

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