FAQ: Sexually Transmitted Diseases
A sexually transmitted disease (STD) is a disease that is spread through any sort of sexual contact. There are many different types of STDs, all with unique symptoms and treatment methods. People often have confusion or questions regarding STDs, and this article takes a look at some of the most frequently asked questions, and their answers, about STDs.
What are the symptoms of an STD?
Each STD can have different symptoms, and some can show no symptoms at all. Because of this, it’s important to regularly visit STD testing sites if you are sexually active. However, if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, it’s important to get tested immediately.
- Vaginal or penile discharge or unusual fluid that may be white or yellow
- A burning sensation when urinating
- An unexplained rash
- Bumps, blisters, sores, or warts on the genital area
How can I tell if I have an STD?
Unfortunately, there’s no sure way to know if you have an STD without getting an STD test. If you are sexually active, STD testing should be a part of your regular physical. However, if you have any concerns or fear that you may have been exposed to an STD, it’s important to get tested as soon as possible. STD testing sites can be found at a medical center, urgent care facility, or a walk in clinic. All of these facilities are less expensive than an emergency room and have more flexible hours. Seeing as how only 29% of primary care doctors offer after-hour coverage, an urgent center can be a great option if you need immediate attention after regular business hours.
What can I do to avoid getting an STD?
Since it’s completely possible that an STD can stay hidden for years and not show any symptoms, you can still get an STD from your partner, even if you’ve only been sexually active with each other. Because of this, it’s important to take precautions whether you’re sexually active with one or multiple people. It’s always a good idea to use a condom to reduce the risk of getting an STD through the spreading of body fluids during sex. Additionally, don’t use any IV street drugs and especially don’t share needles. Not only will drugs affect your ability to make smart decisions about sex, but many STDs can be transmitted through blood.
Unfortunately, STDs are fairly common. That is why it is so important to regularly visit STD testing sites to ensure you don’t have a disease that you could potentially give to someone else. If you do get an STD, getting tested at an urgent care facility will allow you to be properly diagnosed and treated, and prevent you from giving the disease to a partner.