Search For a Provider Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube ES View the Patient Toolkit

Did You Know?

Sex and COVID-19

Sex and COVID-19Across the world, people are doing their part to slow down the spread of the coronavirus. We’re hunkering down, avoiding crowds, and keeping our distance.

What does all this mean for sex?

It’s important to know that the coronavirus can be spread through sexual activity! The virus has been found in saliva and feces. It can linger on surfaces, including fingertips, bedsheets, and sex toys. Scientists still aren’t sure whether it’s present in semen or vaginal fluids.

It can also be transmitted by people who don’t have symptoms yet.

Now, more than ever, safe sex should be a priority. Here are some tips:

  • Only kiss and/or have sex with a regular partner whom you live with.
  • Limit the number of partners you have.
  • Don’t have sex if you or your partner is feeling sick.
  • Don’t have sex with someone who is at risk for coronavirus.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before and after sex.
  • Wash sex toys thoroughly as well.
  • Avoid rimming (stimulating the anus with your tongue)
  • Use condoms and dental dams during every sexual act.

Following these guidelines can be tough, but you can still be intimate with a partner and get some sexual release during the pandemic.

  • Masturbate. Just make sure you wash your hands, along with any sex toys or screens you might touch, before and after.
  • Use technology. Try phone sex or sexting with your partner. Describe what you’d be doing if you were in the same room together. Or use your imagination to visit a fantasy you haven’t explored.

Also, be aware that coronavirus news changes rapidly. Be sure to stay on top of the situation in your community through your local health department.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

“How to Protect Yourself”

(Page last reviewed: March 18, 2020)

New York City Health Department

“Sex and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)”

(March 21, 2020)

World Health Organization

“Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Pandemic”