How To Protect Yourself From Sexually Transmitted Diseases
We all love Sex! But now more than ever it is important to safeguard your health. Getting lost in the moment is way too easy but forgetting to protect yourself can have lasting effects. I created this guide to remind us how important it is to be educated about Sexually Transmitted Diseases and how to avoid them.
The Facts About Sex And Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDS)
As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. This goes for many things in life but is especially relevant when it comes to sexually transmitted infections and diseases. STIs and STDs are often avoided topics of conversation. But it’s such an important aspect of life for everyone to talk about and sex isn’t something to be ashamed of.
From teens learning about sex and sexual health for the first time to adults of any age. We should place more importance of avoiding these things themselves than avoiding conversations about them. So, let’s talk about sex.
STIs and STDs
One in every two people will get an STI or STD before they are 25 years of age. So they’re much more common than you might have thought. But what are they? STI stands for “sexually transmitted infection” and STD stands for “sexually transmitted disease”. They are passed from person to person through unprotected sex, and some are more common than others. Here are a few of the main ones.
Chlamydia is the biggest cause of preventable infertility. It can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease and the risk of ectopic pregnancy in women. Many people with chlamydia won’t have any symptoms. It can be easily treated with a course of antibiotics.
This is spread through contact with open, infected sores (most usually during sex). It can cause serious health problems if left untreated. These can include blood infection, brain damage, nervous system damage and even (in extreme circumstances) death. If diagnosed within a year, it can be treated with a shot of penicillin or antibiotics. Any later and a course of stronger antibiotics will be needed.
Herpes is more common than you think and has relatively few symptoms. It is incurable, but there are treatments which can make long-term symptoms that can make outbreaks of sores less frequent.
This can cause infertility in both men and women. The majority of strains are treatable and curable, but recent studies have found one strain in particular that is resistant to all currently used antibiotics.
If you are worried that you may have an infection or disease, you will have to undergo sexually transmitted disease testing. This should be done if you have had any form of unprotected sex. A test can be sent to you to do yourself at home. More thorough and reliable tests can be carried out by your GP and local sexual health or family planning clinics.
STI self-sampling kits are discreetly posted to you and can test for chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis and HIV. They will involve a swab and a pin prick blood test. Tests in the clinic will involve similar procedures, but may also involve a standard blood test.
The most effective form of prevention is to abstain from sex entirely. But this is extreme and an option that many are not going to want to take.
The next best thing is to use a condom properly every time you have sex.
A second option is to have a monogamous relationship with someone who has had a full sexual health test and tested negative. This requires both of you to have sex 100% exclusively with one another, though. Remember, you can only ever completely guarantee your own monogamy.