What steps should a woman take before having anal sex?

Good question!

Condoms should be used when having anal sex  to help reduce the risk of STIs. The anus does not self lubricate so micro tears can occur easily in the anus which can cause a higher risk for STI transmission. Using condoms also helps reduce the risk of pregnancy.  While anal sex itself isn’t doesn’t cause a risk for pregnancy, if any semen made contact with the vagina, or leaked from the anus to the vaginal opening it could cause a risk for pregnancy.

It is important to use lubrication when having anal sex. Like we previously mentioned, the anus does not self lubricate and lubrication will help reduce the risk of the condom breaking, micro tears, and may make things more comfortable. It is important to use water based lubrication with condoms. Any lubrication with oil (lotion, vaseline, etc) can break down the material of the condom making it ineffective.

You could also start slow by using fingers or toys first before engaging in anal sex to see what everyone is comfortable with. Communicate with partner(s) if anything doesn’t feel good or is uncomfortable, this should be communicated and sexual contact should stop.