According to the Centers for Disease Control and prevention (CDC), it is estimated that there are 19 million new sexually transmitted diseases that occur each year in the US. Many of these diseases can be treated if diagnosed early on, however, so many people are not getting tested regularly and are participating in some risky behaviors. Untreated STD’s can be fatal to your health, lead to infertility and it even take your life.
The rates of STD’s are significantly higher amongst adolescents, young adults and African-Americans. This is why it is important that you educate yourself and know the facts! Check out the Q&A below and be sure you are down with all the correct answers… it just may save your life.
1. Can you have an STD and not know it?
Yes. The only way to know for sure, is to get tested. Although some STD’s sometimes have symptoms, it is very common for to have little or no symptoms, especially in the early stages.
2. What is the most common STD?
Chlamydia is the most common STD reported to the CDC.
3. Are there any sexual activities that are 100% safe?
The answer is NO! If it involves skin-to-skin touching, or exposure to another person’s genitals, mouth, or body fluids, you can catch an STD. And yes, this even means kissing.
4. If you’re pregnant and have an STD, can you pass it to your child?
Yes, pregnant women can pass STD’s on to their unborn fetuses and sometimes while giving birth. You can avoid this by getting the appropriate prenatal care; that way, you’ll be tested for STD’s and know all the precautions to take.
4. If you’ve been treated for an STD, are you clear from catching it again?
No. It is important to remember that, once you get treated, you can get the STD back again if you continue to have sex, particularly if you have unprotected sex. Some STDs will never go away, Others, you may die from.
5. How can you protect yourself from contracting an STD?
The best way to avoid getting STD’s is not to abstain from having sex (vaginal, oral, or anal) or intimate sexual contact until you are married. Even waiting to have sex until you are older lowers your chances of getting an STD. The younger you are when you have sex for the first time, the more likely you are to get an STD. If you do have sex, make sure both you and your partner get tested, only have sex with each other and no one else, and always have a condom. Your reproductive system is one of the most fragile systems of your body. It can easily get infected or injured, and, if it does, you might have long-term health problems.