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February is Sexual Health Awareness Month


February is traditionally known as the month of love and romance. Howeve r, along with roses and chocolate comes the need to make well-informed choices about intimate relationships and sexuality. That is why February has been deemed Sexual Health Awareness Month. Sexual health is defined as a state of physical, emotional, mental and societal wellbeing related to sexuality; it is not merely the absence of disease or dysfunction. Sexual Health Awareness Month aims to broaden people's understanding of sexual health and encourage positive intimate relationships. The need for more information and better decision-making in sexual relationships is apparent in Montana's young adults. In 2007, 75 percent of reported Chlamydia cases and 66 percent of all Gonorrhea cases occurred in those between the ages of 15-24. Almost half 44 percent, of pregnancies in Montana are unplanned. In conjunction with National Condom Week — Feb. 14-20 — and Sexual Health Awareness Month, the campaign, "It Just Makes Sense!" is reaching out to Montanans between the ages of 18-30, in an effort to increase awareness and understanding of the social, cultural, environmental and behavioral factors that can influence their sexual health. Take action in your community by promoting open and honest discussions about sexuality. You can get involved by contacting Hill County Family Planning. We would be glad to come to your organization or gathering to present additional information. Wanda Meredith R.N. Hill County Family Planning


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