Like all opiates methadone can remove or inhibit the desire to have sex. But this can be erratic.

Condoms not only help to prevent pregnancy but can also protect you and your partner against HIV, hepatitis and other sexually transmitted diseases.

It is not only people who share injecting equipment who get HIV and hepatitis - they are also spread through unprotected sex. Be sure you have condoms with you if there is any chance you may need them.

HIV and hepatitis live in body fluids: mainly blood, semen and vaginal fluid. They are passed on when the infected body fluids of one person pass into the blood of another person.

This happens most easily during unsafe sex: the walls of the vagina and the skin on the penis are very thin and easily damaged. When people have sex without a condom the virus can pass easily into their bloodstream.

Safer sex is sex with reduced risk of your partner's semen, vaginal fluid or blood getting into your bloodstream. There is no cure for HIV so the only way to protect yourself is to practise safer sex and safer injecting.

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