Common Health QuestionsBack
Can genital HPV infection be prevented?
Using condoms can reduce your risk of getting a genital human papilloma virus (HPV) infection. You can also be vaccinated against some types of HPV.
Using a condom
Using a condom during sex can help to prevent an HPV infection. However, condoms don't offer complete protection. HPV can be present all over the area around your genitals and anus, and is spread through skin-to-skin contact of the genital area - not just penetrative sex.
If you've been treated for genital warts (which are caused by HPV), you should use a condom for three to six months after your treatment finishes. This may reduce the risk of passing the virus on to your partner if they haven't already been exposed.
All girls aged 12-13 are offered a vaccination against HPV to help protect them against types of HPV that can cause cervical cancer. The vaccination also helps to protect against the more common types of HPV that cause genital warts.
Read more about HPV vaccination.
Read the answers to more questions about sexual health.
- What is HPV?
- Can genital HPV infections be tested for?
- Can genital HPV infections be treated?
- Genital warts
- Using condoms
- Sexually transmitted infections
Practising safe sex by using condoms can help to prevent genital human papilloma virus (HPV) infection.