When the topic of safe sex and condoms comes up with a potential partner, the best way to find out whether you are on the same page is to just "be honest".

This is according to college newspaper editor Dante Geoffrey, who discussed the matter with co-editor Brittany Bradley in a recent article for the State Hornet.

Being direct and gentle when approaching the issue will also help, but do not avoid the topic, as this will make it into a far bigger problem than it needs to be, they agreed.

"If you feel that you can't talk about it comfortably then you're probably talking to the wrong person," Mr Geoffrey added.

The article also touched on when it is or is not okay to ask a partner about how many people they have previously been with. Both editors said although it is sometimes an awkward question, it is more than acceptable to ask as soon as sex with that person becomes a real possibility.

Not only is contraception important for preventing unwanted pregnancy, but condoms are crucial for protection against sexually transmitted infections. Health Protection Agency figures from 2010 show that the peak age for STIs in men is between 20 and 23 years old and for women it is 19 and 20 years old.