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Sex and COVID-19: Can you get COVID-19 from sexual activity?

Answer Section

COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) is not a sexually transmitted disease. But you can get the COVID-19 virus from close contact. That includes actions such as talking with, kissing or sexual activity with a person who has COVID-19.

The COVID-19 virus spreads mainly from person to person.

People with COVID-19 can breathe out virus particles. The virus particles can then be breathed in or land in a close contact's eyes, nose or mouth.

The longer and closer your contact, the higher the risk of COVID-19.

It also is possible to get or spread the COVID-19 virus on a surface. A sexual partner could get the virus by touching these surfaces and then touching the mouth, nose or eyes. But the risk of this is low.

The risk of getting the virus that causes COVID-19 from genital-to-genital contact or from contact with body fluids linked with sex also is low.

When tested, saliva, semen, vaginal fluid, urine and feces all had measurable levels of the COVID-19 virus. But studies can't yet separate the possible risk of getting the virus through these fluids from the known risk of getting the virus by breathing in particles containing the virus during sex.

It's unlikely to get an infection through a scrape or cut in the skin.

To avoid getting COVID-19, stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccination.

If you or a partner has symptoms of COVID-19, stay apart until you feel better. If you are at a higher risk of serious illness, talk with your healthcare professional about how best to protect yourself.

Content Last Updated: 14-May-2024
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