Women's Health Portal

 Sexual Health for Women

Last Updated: November 06, 2023
Skip Navigation LinksDCPH-A Home / Topics / Healthy Living / Women's Health Portal / Sexual Health for Women


Traini​ng Aid: Women's Health in the Army handout 

Get sexual healthcare answers ​on the Defense Healthcare Agency's (DHA) Deployment Readiness Education for Servicewomen (DRES) app. ClickExternal Link or scan this QR code to use the app: ​

​Birth Control and Family Planning

Birth control, or contraception, is any method or device used to prevent pregnancy. Some types of contraception work better than others at preventing pregnancy, but many do not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), which includes human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

Women can choose from many different types of birth control - factors to consider include health status, desire to have children now or in the future, and need to prevent STIs. Your doctor can help you decide which type is best for you right now. 


Resources to help you learn more:

  • Federal birth control resourcesExternal Link The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Office of Women's Health site provides comparisons of all types of birth control and answers common questions.
  • Condoms - all around best preventionExternal Link Consistent and correct use of condom prevents unintended pregnancy and reduces the risk for HIV and other STIs. Great resources are provided by this CDC site which includes factsheets on correct use of external and internal condoms, and dental dams.
  • Knowing if you are pregnantExternal Link A missed period is often the first clue that you might be pregnant - but you might suspect sooner. Read more about at home pregnancy tests and blood tests at a doctor's office.

Additional Resources for Healthcare Providers:


Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)​

CDC es​timates that 1 in 5 people in the U.S. have an STI. The number may be higher among active duty Soldiers due to their high risk age category and job-related stressors.

  • Use this brochure to learn what you can do to protect yourself from STIs​
  • Read this articleExternal Link about the problem of STIs among Army Soldiers
  • Syphilis is on the rise among Service members - read this 2023 articleExternal Link​ 

Sometimes referred to as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), STIs include persons who may appear 'symptom-free' but who are 'carriers' of an infection. STIs can be caused by many types of virus, bacteria, and parasites.​

Examples of common STIs that are monitored among Soldiers today include chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis. The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is also a type of STI. Other examples of STIs include genital herpes and the human papilloman virus (HPV). ​

See this CDC site for a list of various STIs and factsheets for eachExternal Link​​

Women often have more serious health problems from STIs than men, including infertility. Click hereExternal Link to learn the facts about STIs specific to women. 

Additional Resources for Soldiers and Beneficiaries:

Additional Resources for Healthcare Providers: