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can anal sex have any long term effects on my body? I’ve heard that it can cause anal leakage later in life, and anal prolapse. is this true?

Anal sex is perfectly healthy and safe in both the long and short term. There is a very small risk of leakage and prolapse (when your pelvic muscles weaken and cause organs to slip down) over the course of a lifetime. And anal sex can also aggravate existing hemorrhoids. But in general, it doesn't cause long-term harm. 

If you are going to have anal sex, follow these few simple guidelines to keep yourself safe:

  • The anus doesn’t make enough lubrication on its own for comfortable anal sex, so it’s important to use plenty of lube. Go slowly and listen to the signals your body is sending you. Stop if anything hurts or feels uncomfortable, and let your partner know how you feel.
  • Having safer sex can help you and your partner stay healthy. Like unprotected vaginal sex, unprotected anal sex can spread STDs like chlamydia, gonorrhea, hepatitis, herpes, HIV, HPV, and syphilis. So use condoms or internal condoms during anal sex to help prevent STDs. Make sure to only use water-based or silicone lubricants with latex condoms. Using anything oil-based — like coconut oil, lotion, or Vaseline — can damage condoms and cause them to break. 
  • Oral sex on an anus (aka analingus or rimming) can also lead to intestinal parasites and hepatitis, so it's important to wash your anus with soap and water before. You can also use a dental dam to prevent contact with skin and fluids that can spread STDs and parasites.

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