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What is a Sexually Transmitted Disease?
Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), also called sexually transmitted infections (STIs), are a growing problem in the United States.
You may have heard the names before: chlamydia, herpes and hepatitis, and, of course, HIV/AIDS. These diseases are spreading at a faster rate than ever, in part due to risky sexual practice and a lack of information. Often times, someone infected with an STD/STI shows no symptoms (this is why STI is the preferrered term), but a lack of symptoms does not make the STD any less contagious nor does it protect you from the nasty side effects of letting the disease go untreated. Get educated today!
Chlamydia is spread through sexual contact, including vaginal, anal, and oral sex. It is easily one of the most common STDs out there. Clamidia can be cured with antibiotics, but unfortunately those infected usually show no symptoms. If left untreated, Chlamydia can cause sterility in both men and women. At least three million individuals are infected with Chlamydia each year acc. Common symptoms of clamidia include: discharge from lower regions, painful urination, painful intercourse, abdominal pain, nausea, fever, swelling and bleeding from lower regions (specific symptoms for men or women). Symptoms usually occur with in 21 days of infection. Treatment of Chlamydia is usually taken care of with an antibiotic, usually doxycycline, taken for a week.
Herpes is also an extremely common sexually transmitted disease, and it's one that can be treated but not cured. Many adults have some version of the STD, but most of the infected do not know they even have the Herpes Simplex Virus due to a lack of symptoms. Herpes is commonly associated with sores on the mouth (cold sores) and genitals (genital herpes). There is no cure for herpes, but symptoms and breakouts can be treated with medication prescribed by your doctor. Someone using these medications can lead a break-out free life and generally live normally. Generally, herpes is usually the most problematic during the first breakout and lessens in severity with age.
There are different versions of Hepatitis, another STD. Hepatitus B for example can be prevented with a vaccination, other versions of hepatitis cannot. Hepatitis can be spread via sexual activity or by eating food handled improperly as a Food-Bourne illness. Hepatitis is a serious illness that affects the Liver and may cause jaundice if left untreated. All symptoms associated with hepatitis should be directed to a medical professional for immediate treatment. We repeat, Hepatitus can be very serious and it is important to get the facts and resources immediately for treatment. Other symptoms of hepatitis can include : extreme fatigue, headache, fever and hives. Hepatitus may be invisible during its most contagious stages.
Nearly half of all sexually active adults will have a sexually transmitted disease by age 25 - these things are common! Yes, they are also embarrassing, but that's no excuse not to get tested and treated should you be infected. Take control of your sexual health today!