What is sexual and reproductive health?
Sexual and reproductive health refers to the complete physical, mental, and social well-being of an individual as it pertains to their reproductive system. Care providers play a role in supporting people in having a satisfying and safe sex life, the capability to reproduce and manage their own reproduction, and the freedom to decide if, when, and how often to do so. These supports can look like health education, prenatal care and family planning, pregnancy prevention tools (e.g., condoms, birth control, and emergency contraception), testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, and holistic care for the development and maintenance of healthy relationships and behaviors.
LGBTQ+ people are defined as sexual and gender minorities, making sexual and reproductive healthcare for LGBTQ+ people incredibly important. This starts with healthcare providers and systems educating themselves about LGBTQ+ people and their experiences, particularly how those impact their sexual and reproductive healthcare needs. It also involves LGBTQ+ people having access to quality, comprehensive sexual health education. With accurate and affirming information, LGBTQ+ people can build a strong understanding of their sexual and reproductive well-being and health goals.