Talking with your doctor or health care professional about sex can be very hard. They are often rushed and may not give an obvious opening to a conversation about sex. Doctors have widely varying degrees of sexual knowledge. Some medical schools offer sexuality courses, but they are rarely required. Most doctors will have some training around sexual dysfunction, and will know about STDs, but will have very little general knowledge about other aspects of sexual health.
Plan Before You GoDoctors tend to interrupt patients early on when they are trying to talk about their concerns, so think about what youd like to ask, and see if you can put it in a question that is one or two sentences. You can fill in the details afterwards.
Talk To FriendsIf you are comfortable with this, talk to other people about your concerns. Only pick people you think will respect your privacy and can handle a serious conversation about sex. Doing this can give you valuable information about other peoples experience, and it also gives you practice on talking about your concerns.
Do Some Research FirstThe internet is a great resource for health and medical information (be sure you are visiting reputable sites). If you have concerns, or are worried you may have a physical condition/illness/disease, do some research on your own first. You can bring what youve read in with you, or use your doctor to explain anything that may not be clear. Using online resources that physicians are familiar with can be a good idea.
Ask About ConfidentialityDoctors are required to keep communications with patients confidential, but it doesnt mean they always will. Its a good idea to ask your doctor what the rules of confidentiality are, and to let them know that you want the conversation to be private, even if your doctor also sees your spouse or partner as a patient.
Be Prepared for Their DiscomfortWe tend to project a lot of expectations on our doctors. But like anyone else, your doctor may be uncomfortable talking about sex with you. This doesnt mean that you cant do it, and it doesnt mean that your doctor cant be helpful to you. Being prepared for a little bit of awkwardness will guard against you backing out at the last minute.