These Coronavirus Sex Guidelines From New York City Are Going Viral

If you're wondering, "Can I have sex during quarantine?" the NYC Department of Health has your answer.

By now, it's pretty clear that self-isolating is crucial in order to stop the spread of COVID-19. But if you're locked up at home with your significant other, you might be asking yourself, "Can I have sex during the quarantine?" Expert advice has been a bit mixed and vague up until this point, with some suggesting it's OK if you're in a committed relationship and others saying no contact with anyone means no contact with anyone. Here to the rescue is this extremely comprehensive guide from the New York City Department of Health on having sex during the COVID-19 pandemic, which recently went viral. (Warning: Graphic sexual language follows.)

Google searches for "Can I have sex during the quarantine" massively spiked on Mar. 20, and it's probably no coincidence that that was the day New York Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered residents to stay inside. Then, on Mar. 21, the New York City Department of Health issued this handy guide—and the pun there is very much intended because they make it pretty clear that "you are your safest sex partner" since "masturbation will not spread COVID-19."

The "next safest partner is someone you live with," given that "having close contact—including sex—with only a small circle of people helps prevent spreading COVID-19." What kind of sex, you ask? Penetrative and oral sex seem OK, but you should use protection, as "condoms and dental dams can reduce contact with saliva or feces, especially during oral or anal sex." Rimming, on the other hand, is out of the question, as is having sex with strangers. And, lest you forget, "washing up before and after sex is more important than ever."

Naturally, you should skip sex if you or your partner is showing symptoms of COVID-19 or if either of you have a pre-existing medical condition. You should also avoid kissing, as "kissing can easily pass COVID-19," and especially "avoid kissing anyone who is not part of your immediate circle of close contacts."

Few cities released such explicit coronavirus sex guidelines, so New York City is getting a lot of online attention for theirs.

People are wondering why anyone was having sex while sick before.

And it's definitely opened up a conversation about rimming.

Parents everywhere are confused.

And some can't help but wonder who didn't know most of this already?

All of this to say, the answer to "Can I have sex during while quarantining" is "sort of," depending on the levels of precaution you want to take. But if you can go without it for a little while, it's probably best that you do.

Diana Bruk
Diana is a senior editor who writes about sex and relationships, modern dating trends, and health and wellness. Read more