Human Pappilomavirus (HPV) causes most cases of cervical cancer, as well as penile, anal, and several other cancers. And the CDC recommends the HPV vaccine for all boys and girls ages 11 and 12, teens who didn’t get the vaccine when they were younger, young men up to age 21, and young women up to age 26. Unfortunately, more and more parents are not getting their kids vaccinated, mostly out of completely misplaced fears about the vaccine’s safety and whether it could lead to early sexual activity.
Overall, less than a third of girls eligible for the vaccine actually get it, and of those, only one in three gets all three of the recommended doses. A variety of international studies have shown that HPV vaccines are no more dangerous than any other vaccines (which means they’re pretty darn safe) and that there is no connection between getting the vaccine and promiscuity—for girls or boys.