It’s safe sex for Malaysians – generally
Published: Fri, 09 Nov 2012
SHAH ALAM: Malaysians are seen as generally aware of safe sex after coming in at 13th place, out of 37 countries, to have most likely used condoms in their first sexual experience in the latest Durex “Face of Global Sex Report 2012”.
A total of 54% of Malaysians answered that they used condoms in their first sexual experience, a figure higher than neighbours Indonesia and Singapore.
Malaysian youths on average encounter their first sexual experience at the age of 23 after receiving sexual education at the age of 15.
This makes Malaysia the second oldest group after India to have received sexual education. Countries like Mexico, Austria and Germany provided sex education for their youths from an average of 12 years.
“The results show that despite being exposed to sex education at a later date, Malaysians are highly aware of safe sex practices,” said Reckitt Benckiser Malaysia and Singapore strategic commercial director Nikhilesh Kalra.
He said this reduces the likelihood of sexually transmitted infections (STI) and unplanned pregnancies.
Durex’s report is an ongoing initiative developed in 1990 to investigate the correlation between using a condom at the first sexual encounter and its impact on future sexual behaviour.
This provides useful information to public health professionals to plan for effective measures to reduce the incidences of STIs and unplanned pregnancies.
The survey, which reached out to over 29,000 respondents in 37 countries, found that those who used a condom during their first sexual encounter are more likely to continue to practise safe sex measures.
Other findings include: 78.6% of Malaysian respondents said they have never experienced an STI, and among Southeast Asian countries, Malaysia ranked the second lowest at 66.7% after South Korea, where respondents said they never had an unplanned pregnancy.
“The survey findings indicate condom use at first sexual intercourse is far from a universal practice,” said Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Center for Adolescent Health director Freya Sonenstein. She added that focusing educational and marketing efforts to encourage youths to use condoms pays off immediately as they can protect themselves from the negative consequences of sex.
Kalra added that Durex will plan more campaigns to encourage safe sexual behaviour and hopes to reach out to peer influences and youths to effectively spread the message of safe sex.