Types of STDs and How to Avoid Them

Types of STDs and How to Avoid Them

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STDs (Sexually Transmitted Diseases) are infections that are spread through sexual contact. There are a variety of STDs, but they all have the same basic mechanism for transfer: bodily fluids. Most STDs can be transmitted through vaginal, anal, or oral sex. STDs are usually spread when body fluids such as blood, semen, and vaginal fluids from an infected person come into contact with the mucous membranes of another person’s body.

The most common types of STDs in the U.S. are chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis. These can cause infertility if left untreated. Therefore, it is always important to undergo STD testing and treatment.

Here are different types of STDs

Types of STDs

Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea is caused by the bacterium “Neisseria gonorrhoeae.” It is passed through sexual contact, both vaginal and anal. The disease can also be passed to infants during birth. Often symptoms don’t appear until months after infection.

Chylamydia

Chlamydia is the most frequently reported STD in the United States. Chlamydia is caused by bacteria passed through sexual contacts such as vaginal sex, anal sex, oral sex, or genital-to-genital contact. It can be transmitted to partners who do not have any symptoms. Common signs of chlamydia include burning when urinating, pain in the lower abdomen, and swelling of the genitals.

Syphilis

Syphilis is the most commonly occurring STD in the United States. It’s caused by a bacterium called Treponema pallidum, which can infect the skin, joints, or internal organs and spread to the bloodstream. These stages of infection are known as primary, secondary, latent, and tertiary syphilis. The symptoms of syphilis include chancres and rashes on the hands and feet and open ulcers on the genitals. Syphilis can be treated using antibiotics if caught early enough.

STD Testing Types

Blood Tests: This type of STD test is usually done on blood samples via blood draw from a vein or your finger. The blood is then sent to an outside laboratory where it is tested for HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, and syphilis. Due to the ease of getting a blood test and the comparatively lower cost than other STD tests, many people choose this method to determine their status. Many clinics also offer free HIV tests and discounted STD testing in general.

Urine tests: A doctor’s visit is the best way to know if you have an STD. You’ll want to be 100 percent sure of your diagnosis before you visit a clinic for STD treatment. You can go directly to an STD clinic if you do not want to see your doctor. However, most doctors’ offices offer STD testing and treatment, which are usually more affordable than STD clinics.

Swab tests: They use a swab to collect cells from the infected area. These cells are then microscopically examined for the presence of the selected pathogen. Swab tests are quick, simple, and accurate. However, some STDs, such as chlamydia, cannot be detected this way.

Key Takeaway

Knowing when you have an STD (sexually transmitted disease) and how to properly treat it is crucial. By being aware of the symptoms and signs of an infection, you can get an accurate diagnosis as soon as possible. If you suspect that you might have one, there are things you can do to confirm your diagnosis and receive an appropriate course of treatment.

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