Parents: Talk to your Teen Part 2 Eastern Health 2016

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Talking to your teenager about Sexuality & Sexual Health
A Guide for Parents & Caregivers Part 2: Sexual Development & Sexual Health Risks
Pre-teens (aged 9-12) and teens (aged 13-18) experience changes related to sexual development. Here we break down what these changes are and note that every person experiences these changes at a different time and pace.
How do I help my pre-teen or teen with changes related to sexual development?
What to expect in pre-teens:
The changes of puberty may begin They may seek privacy They may have concerns about body image They may develop a crush or romantic feelings for people of the opposite and/or the same sex They may explore sexual contact with peers They may masturbate to orgasm They may face decisions about sex and drugs
Video Resource: The Hair Down There
What to expect in teens:
The changes in puberty will end, but boys develop about 2 years later than girls They want to be independent, which you should value They may become more aware of their physical appearance & sexual feelings They may be more influenced by peer groups and how to be accepted by them They may want to pursue a romantic relationship and feel pressures to be sexually active They may prefer romantic relationship to close friendship They may make choices that could lead to pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
Video Resource: Helping Your Teenager to Wait to Have Sex
Helping your Teen Deal with Peer Pressure
They should never feel pressured to be sexually active They have the right to say NO No means No Not everyone is doing it
Tell your teen:
If you are feeling pressured you can always use me as an excuse:       My mom and/or dad would freak out! Other ways to say no       I'm not ready for that yet       I don't feel comfortable doing that       I don't want to get in trouble
Ways to say NO:
If my teen decides to be sexually active, what are the risks?
STIs are sexually transmitted infections. You should be aware of the most common ones, how they are spread & their symptoms.
Video Resource: Helping Your Sexually Active Teen Be Safe
Your teen needs to know that STIs can be spread by:         Oral, vaginal or anal sex         Skin to skin contact
How STIs are spread and ways to reduce the risks:
Many people do not show symptoms of STIs and can spread them if they engage in sexual activity without a condom or dental/oral dam. A dental/oral dam is a square piece of latex that covers the vagina or anus.
The only way to know if you have an STI is to get tested.
Some parents choose to buy condoms and tell their teen where they are stored. Doing so can create opportunities to talk about being responsible and reduce the risk of unintended pregnancies and STIs.
For more information see Talking to your Teenager about Sexuality & Sexual Health, Parts 1, 3-5 and our Conversation Tips:
Part 1: Growing Up Sexually Healthy & Let's Start Talking
Part 5: The Internet & Sex
Part 4: Alcohol & Other Drug Use
Part 3: Teens & Birth Control
Conversation Tips
Eastern Health, 2016
Talking to Your Teenager about Sexuality, ages 13-18, Peel Public Health.