Safe sex practices among African American women

Researchers have found that African American women exhibit a higher risk for sexually transmitted infections including HIV/Aids. But what motivates this group of women to have sex? And when are they more likely to use protection?

A new study published today in & Behavior found that regardless of motivations for having sex, condom use expectations were less than 50% for all types of sexual encounters, including the riskiest types of sex.

Researchers Julianna Deardorff et. al used a combination of interviews and focus groups to conduct the study. Participants were with low incomes who had had an average of 1.2 sexual partners in the past month. Their average age was 20.4 years old.

While the participants in the study labeled love, feelings, and fun as their top reasons for sexual encounters, expectations for condom use were the lowest when women were pressured to have sex, for example when they were inexperienced or controlled by peers or sexual partners.

"Findings highlight the need for tailored interventions to increase condom use in casual relationships, where perceived risk is already high, and in primary relationships, where motivations for condom use may be low." the authors wrote. "Interventions that address mediators of sexual risk, including self-esteem and coping, may be more effective than those focusing solely on risk perceptions."

More information: "Motivations for Sex Among Low-Income African American Young Women" by Julianna Deardorff, Ahna B. Suleiman, Teresa S. Dal Santo, Michelle Flythe, J. Barry Gurdin, and Stephen L. Eyre, Health Education and Behavior: heb.sagepub.com/content/early/… 473112.full.pdf+html

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Protecting adolescent girls from unwanted unprotected sex

Sep 06, 2011

Partner abuse leads to HIV infection, and black women are most at risk. A new study at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing has found that 46 percent of African-American adolescent girls report that their partner ...

Older women lack important information about sexual health

Sep 14, 2011

Many women over 50 years old date and are sexually active and thereby face many possible health risks. Yet, most educational campaigns designed to prevent sexually transmitted diseases target younger generations. Older women ...

Recommended for you

Study examines effect of hospital switch to for-profit status

12 hours ago

Hospital conversion from nonprofit to for-profit status in the 2000s was associated with better subsequent financial health but had no relationship to the quality of care delivered, mortality rates, or the proportion of poor ...

Hospital acquisitions leading to increased patient costs

12 hours ago

The trend of hospitals consolidating medical groups and physician practices in an effort to improve the coordination of patient care is backfiring and increasing the cost of patient care, according to a new study led by the ...

User comments