When you’re sexually active, pregnancy is usually your greatest concern. While pregnancy is something to be concerned about, STDs (sexually transmitted diseases) are equally, if not as concerning. If you think you have an STI (sexually transmitted infection), contact us to talk with a peer counselor and get a referral for testing right in your community. Facing the possibility of a STD is concerning, but you don’t have to go through it alone.
What are STDs?
Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are diseases passed from person to person during sexual activity (vaginal, oral and anal sex, outercourse or mutual masturbation). STDs can be transmitted through bodily fluids and, in some cases, skin-to-skin contact. It’s important to remember that not everyone infected with an STD will experience signs or symptoms. But STDs can still cause severe damage, and can be passed to your partner(s) without your knowledge. You don’t need to be experiencing symptoms to be contagious. You can spread the disease at any time.
STDs and STIs: What is the difference?
The terms STD (sexually transmitted disease) and STI (sexually transmitted infection) are often used interchangeably. But do you know the difference? The term STI is used to describe the presence of an infection in the body, which may or may not be accompanied by symptoms. The term STD, on the other hand, describes an infection that has caused damage in the person’s body, though, like STIs, an STD may or may not be accompanied by symptoms.
Condoms are not as effective as you might think when it comes to preventing the spread of STIs (sexually transmitted infections). Using a condom during sex can reduce the risk of transmitting or contracting certain STIs, but using a condom never eliminates the risk entirely. Vaccinations exist for some STIs, but not all. The only sure way to avoid infection is to refrain from engaging in sexual activity.
Some STIs can be treated and cured with medications. Early detection is necessary for effective treatment. Other STIs can not be cured, but symptoms can be managed. Being tested for STIs is an easy process and is essential for your sexual health.