STDs Education & Awareness
April is STD (sexually transmitted disease) Education and Awareness Month, so we want to take this opportunity to raise awareness about STDs and STIs (sexually transmitted infections) and ensure you have the knowledge for prevention and testing. STIs and STDs are much more common than you might realize, and the reality is that people often have no signs or symptoms which makes transmission easy.
So how do you protect yourself?
There are many ways to practice sexual health, but the following is a good start.
- Talk openly with your partner. Know their history and ask them to be tested.
- Get tested after any unprotected sexual contact, with new signs or symptoms, and before starting a new relationship.
- Undergo regular STD testing.
- Use condoms. Condoms do not protect against all STDs because there is still skin on skin contact, but condoms can significantly reduce your chance of a STD.
- Know the signs and symptoms of STDs. Many STDs do not cause symptoms or only cause mild symptoms that one attributes to a urinary tract infection, a yeast infection, or razor burn. Genital herpes is a great example. The majority of people are unaware they have genital herpes as high as 87% do not know they are infected.
- Undergo regular wellness visits with your gynecologist.
At what age should an individual begin getting tested?
The CDC offers some helpful guidelines regarding STD testing:
- HIV testing should occur at least once for anyone between the ages of 13-64.
- Chlamydia and gonorrhea screenings should be performed at least once each year for sexually active women under 25 years of age, and for older women who have new or multiple partners or other risk factors including a partner who has been diagnosed with an STD.
- Pregnant women should be screened for syphilis, hepatitis B, and HIV. At risk women should also be tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea, with repeat testing throughout pregnancy as needed to protect both the mother and the infant.
At Modern Women’s Health, we can help educate you on STIs/STDs, how they’re spread, and what you can do to avoid getting them. Your sexual health is incredibly important, not only for you but for your partners. Part of being sexually active is also being responsible.
If you’re experiencing any STDs/STIs symptoms, don't ignore them. Contact our office with any questions as we are committed to keeping our patients healthy and STD free. Request an appointment for STD/STI screening. Call us at (512) 301-6767 or click the link below.