After all the pearl clutching, there's officially some hard evidence to furthre disprove the ridiculous idea that addressing sexual health will lead to risky sex/sexy risk!!!!1! The results of a study released today by the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center show that the getting the HPV vaccine does not actually lead to the initiation of sex or unsafe sexual behavior. That's right, protecting our girls from HPV and cervical cancer will not render them into sex-machines any more than a flu shot or a bowl of cereal.
It seems like it should be common knowledge that the largely-affordable vaccine is a good decision for many reasons, not the least of which is preventing an onset of cervical cancer, but objection remains. Interestingly, the study also highlighted that any beliefs (accurate or not) about the vaccine that the young women had also played no effect on their sexual behavior. Hopefully, the new data can help battle the misinformation behind families opting out of the vaccine:
"We hope this study reassures parents, and thus improves HPV vaccination rates, which in turn will reduce rates of cervical and other cancers that can result from HPV infection," says Jessica Kahn, MD, a physician in the division of adolescent medicine at Cincinnati Children's.
We'll definitely consider this a success in the long and incredibly frustrating battle against the harmful if-we-don't-acknowledge-it-it-doesn't-exist-until-marriage approach to sexual health.
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