It’s hard to think about your reproductive future when you’re young and wild and free. But, the choices you make today could affect your sex life, your health, and your fertility tomorrow.
The one common denominator as to why STDs get passed is lack of knowledge. Through these articles, you will learn about the most common STD’s, how they’re passed and how to prevent them.
How Are STDs Passed?
Most STDs are passed through vaginal, oral, or anal sex. Don’t let anyone convince you that one kind of sex is safer than another. Sex is sex, and if someone has an infection, they can pass it to you just as easily through your mouth as they can through your genitals.
Interesting Facts about STDs
The most common STDs fall into two categories, viral infections and bacterial infections. Interestingly, many people don’t experience any STD symptoms at all and may not even know they have one. That’s one of the reasons why the spread of STDs is so virulent. People pass them on without realizing it.
Herpes is a viral infection that produces blisters on the genitals (Herpes Type 2) or cold sores around the mouth (Herpes Type 1). However, if your partner has either one of these they can give you sores in either area. In other words, if your partner has Herpes Type 1 and gives you oral sex, you could get sores in your most personal areas.
Although, you might be lucky enough not to have symptoms, if you do you’ll know it. Usually the first outbreak is the worst and starts off with flu symptoms like achy muscles and fever. A few days later, you’ll notice tiny, little red bumps that will blister up, ooze, and crack.
After the outbreak is over, the Herpes virus will stay dormant in your system and you could suffer from recurrent outbreaks. However, there are medications that can reduce the frequency of the recurrences as well as the likelihood of you transmitting it to a partner.
Herpes can also be passed through skin to skin contact and kissing. So if your partner has sores, it’s best to avoid intimacy until the sores have cleared.
HPV is a virus that affects the genitals, anus, or the throat, can cause genital warts, and can even cause cervical cancer in women. Although you may not have any symptoms, some people will notice warts around their genitals several weeks after contact. As a viral infection, you can also get it through skin to skin contact as well.
HPV is preventable through vaccinations. If you do get it, you can have the warts removed, or your doctor can prescribe medications to make you more comfortable. Don’t leave it untreated as some types of HPV can cause cervical or anal cancer. The best preventative for girls is regular pap screenings.
Chlamydia is a bacterial infection that can affect your genitals, anus, or your throat. If you are unlucky enough to experience symptoms, men might experience painful urination, as well as severe pain and itching around the tip of the penis. Women, on the other hand might experience a yellow or green vaginal discharge, irregular vaginal bleeding, and painful urination.
Your doctor will treat it with antibiotics. It’s important to remember that both you and your partner need to get treated at the same time, even if you’re not both showing symptoms. Left untreated, it can result in pelvic inflammatory disease which can leave women infertile or swollen testicles in men.
Continued in Part II