Sexual health and contraception
You can find services related to sexual health and contraception at a health and social services centre (sosiaali- ja terveyskeskus) or a family-planning clinic (ehkäisyneuvola). Different wellbeing services counties may use different names for health and social services centre, such as terveysasema, terveyskeskus or hyvinvointiasema. The name of the family-planning clinic can also be, for example, perhesuunnitteluneuvonta. You can find information about the health services of different localities on the InfoFinland websites for different areas or the website of your wellbeing services county.
Do you have a right to public health services? Read more on the page Health services in Finland.
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You can buy condoms in shops, petrol stations, kiosks and pharmacies. A prescription is not needed.
If you need contraceptive pills, you need a prescription from a doctor. With a prescription, you can buy the pills from a pharmacy. Make an appointment with a doctor for a prescription.
If you are a minor, you do not need a guardian's permission for a prescription. In some areas, contraceptives are free of charge for young people. You can ask your health and social services centre or school nurse about it.
If your contraception fails or you forgot to use it, you can buy an emergency contraception pill from a pharmacy without a prescription. Take it as soon as possible after intercourse, at the latest after 72 hours. Some products can be taken within 120 hours of the intercourse.
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Women’s sexual health
All doctors at health and social services centres can perform gynaecological examinations. Ask for more information at your health and social services centre. If you want to see a female doctor, mention it when booking your appointment. A doctor can write you a referral to a specialist, if necessary.
You can also make an appointment with a private gynaecologist. In that case, you can choose your doctor yourself. However, the services of private doctors are much more expensive for customers.
In Finland, regular screenings are organised for women of a certain age. The purpose is to find breast cancer and cervical cancer in the early stages. Women aged 50 to 69 years undergo breast cancer screenings about once every two years. Women aged 30 to 65 years undergo breast cancer screenings about once every five years.
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Men’s sexual health
You can make a doctor’s appointment at your own health and social services centre. You can request to see a male doctor if you wish. A doctor can write you a referral to a specialist, if necessary.
You can also make an appointment at a private clinic. However, the services of private doctors are much more expensive for customers.
Infertility is often treatable. Infertility can be due to the man or the woman. Sometimes, a medical reason cannot be found for it.
If you stopped using contraception but pregnancy has not started after one year, make a doctor’s appointment. It is a good idea for the couple to go to the clinic together. The doctor will give you a referral for examinations. The examinations determine why pregnancy has not started.
Infertility treatments are offered both by public and private clinics. The right to infertility treatments in public health services depends on, for example, the woman’s age.
Sexually transmitted diseases
If you suspect that you have a sexually transmitted disease, you can make a doctor’s appointment at a health and social services centre or private clinic. In some areas, you can also contact the contraception and family-planning clinic (ehkäisy- ja perhesuunnitteluneuvonta). Ask for more information at your health and social services centre.
Using a condom and dental dam will protect you from most sexually transmitted diseases.
Undocumented persons and asylum seeker also have the right to treatment for sexually transmitted diseases. However, if you are in Finland without a residence permit, you may have to pay for treatment.
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Consider carefully whether circumcision is necessary. If the boy is old enough to express his opinion, he must be asked whether he consents to the operation. The circumcision must not be done if he opposes it. If the boy has two guardians, both must give written consent for the circumcision.
If there is no medical reason for the circumcision, it cannot be done in public health services. In that case, you must pay for the operation yourself.
Only doctors can carry out circumcision. It must be done in sterile conditions. The doctor must provide pain relief.
You can ask for more information on circumcision from a child health clinic, a doctor at a health and social services centre, a school nurse or a school doctor.
Female genital mutilation
Female genital mutilation is a crime in Finland. It can be punished with many years in prison. It is also a crime to make a girl undergo genital mutilation abroad.
If you have been through female genital mutilation, a surgical opening operation can be done for you. Corrective surgery is also possible. Ask for more information at your health and social services centre.