Condom Alarm – HIV/Aids & Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Last but not least: Unless you fancy an HIV/Aids test back home, it should be self-evident to use a condom when having sex with a Thai bar girl. Even if the risk of an HIV infection might not be as high as frequently reported in the foreign media, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are unfortunately pretty common in Pattaya.
No specific statistics regarding the incidence of HIV/Aids and STDs among sex workers in Pattaya are available. But if you talk to “veteran” (s)expats who have lived in Pattaya for some years and regularly use the services of bar girl prostitutes, you’ll find that quite a few of them have contracted one STD or the other during their years in Pattaya. We would also assume that the risk of contracting an STD is higher in “short time” bars and when picking up freelancers from the beach.
What complicates the situation is that many girls might not even know that they’re infected with an STD and therefore don’t seek medical treatment. Others might simply not care. So even if they do know that they have an STD, this still doesn’t necessarily stop them from having unprotected sex with clients. Sadly, the “money number one” principle also applies here.
It doesn’t have to be Aids or Hepatitis, a nasty genital fungal or chlamydia infection, gonorrhea or genital herpes, can easily be transmitted (gonorrhea, for example, can also be transmitted through unprotected oral sex) and will definitely spoil your holidays for at least a few days. And while medication and antibiotics are readily available in local pharmacies and clinics – who really wants to take antibiotics, refrain from drinking alcohol and having sex for a full week when on holiday in Pattaya? Probably not you.
By the way, according to the latest HIV/Aids statistics from 2013, Thailand records about 8,200 new HIV infections and 21,000 Aids-related deaths every year. Sex workers and their clients, injecting drug users and gay men account for over 60% of new infections. Since the first case was reported in 1984, nearly 1.2 million Thais have been infected with HIV and an estimated 460,000 (approx. 0.7% of the population) are currently living with HIV/Aids. On a positive note, in 2010, reportedly “up to 90% of Thai sex workers were found [to be] using condoms.” Learn a lesson from them! (Sources: The Nation, The Nation, Bangkok Post)