Avoid STIs, Not the Conversation
One in four people have a sexually transmitted disease or infection (STD or STI). Professionals use the terms STD or STI to discuss infections. Both are caused by infections that are passed from one person to another during sex. But the good news is that they are avoidable and manageable. A simple conversation can be the cure for a lot of misinformation and worry, so start the discussion before it’s too late.
Regardless of your race or gender, if you are between the ages of 15 to 24 and are having sex you are at higher risk of STIs than older adults. Young adults ages 15 to 24 represent only 25 percent of the sexually experienced population.
But then keep in mind that young adults in this age group acquire nearly half of all new STIs. What does this mean? Young adults are more likely to have unsafe sex, which increases the chance of getting an STI. If you make the decision to have sex, also make the decision to protect yourself.
Yikes. Do I have an STI?
The only way to know for sure if you have an STI is to visit a health-care provider and get tested. Click here for a family planning clinic near you. If you have multiple partners, have had unsafe sex or feel you have been exposed to an STI, you can learn more about symptoms, treatment and prevention by clicking on the most commonly diagnosed STIs listed below.
For more information on STI’s go to www.cdc.gov/std.
What should you expect during testing?
STI testing can range from blood or urine samples to vaginal swabs or small samples taken from the infected area (such as a sore). For more information on what to expect during an STI test, go to: beforeplay.org.