Safer sex is more than just knowing about how to use a condom. It's important to look after yourself, to know your own needs and only to do what you truly want to do. Otherwise you may feel uncomfortable with yourself - and that can lead to a lack of confidence when it comes to insisting on protection.
Alcohol and drugs raise the risk. It's easier to forget that you want to protect yourself from HIV when you're drunk. A rude awakening often follows the next morning. It's a good idea not to consume too much alcohol or drugs before sex.
It's also important to notice changes to your own body quickly. If you experience itchiness, burning or pain, or if you notice any change to your skin, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. Sexually transmitted infections increase the risk of being infected with HIV, because inflammation makes the body susceptible to HIV. If these other infections are diagnosed early, they can be effectively treated.