Agony aunt, Anita Naik, gives advice on how to discuss sexual health and relationships with your teenagers

Do you have a teenager? Are there topics you’d like to talk about, but find them hard to broach without causing embarrassment? While you might worry about talking to your teenagers about sexual health and relationships, a new survey reveals that regular conversations can help them make better decisions to keep them healthy.

The findings show that talking about sex with your kids won’t make them more likely to have sex. In fact, improving their knowledge will actually give them the skills to delay having sex until they’re ready. When they do decide to go ahead, they will be more likely to make responsible, safe choices to protect their health.

As a parent, we must accept that wanting to know more about relationships, feelings and sexual health is part of growing up – but not all kids are able to work easily through the risks and situations they face. While we cannot always be there to guide our children, we can make sure we prepare them in the best way possible by talking openly, discussing key issues and offering guidance.

Sex is a complex topic – from finding out how our bodies work, to forming relationships, and from understanding the full range of contraception to protecting ourselves against STIs.

Knowing how to help your teen without seeming judgmental or out of touch is no simple task, but thankfully help is at hand. Don’t worry if you feel like you don’t know certain things or you’d like to update yourself on the issues. Teen agony aunt and author, Anita Naik, is offering tips and advice on how to communicate with your teens as part of the new Sex. Worth Talking About ( www.nhs.uk/worthtalkingabout) campaign. Launched by the Department for Children, Schools and Families and Department of Health, the initiative encourages parents to have regular, everyday conversations with their teenagers about sex and relationships.

To find out more, watch the WebTV show where Anita will be offering her advice on how to approach potentially difficult conversations.