STD Information and Referrals
If you’re having sex, you’re at risk for STDs as well as pregnancy. Even if you’ve had just one sexual partner, it’s important to be tested to determine whether or not you have an STD. Safe Harbor Pregnancy Medical Center provides free STD information and refers clients for STD testing and treatment. Make an appointment to visit Safe Harbor Pregnancy Medical Center to be referred for STD testing and to learn more about reducing your risk of contracting an STD.
STDs and Abortion
If you’re pregnant and considering abortion, it’s important to be tested for STDs before making a decision. Why? Women who have an abortion with an untreated STD are at greater risk of infection complications and are more likely to develop Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) following the abortion procedure. PID can lead to serious consequences including infertility, ectopic pregnancy, abscess formation and chronic pelvic pain.
What Are My Chances of Being Infected?
Every year in the U.S. there are an estimated 19 million new STD infections and nearly half of all new STD cases occur in people ages 15 to 24. Many of the people who are infected do not experience any symptoms, so they may not know they have an STD. Anyone who is sexually active is at risk for contracting an STD.
Will Condoms Protect Me?
Using condoms offers some level of STD protection, but condoms cannot protect you against certain types of diseases such as herpes, syphilis and HPV. These STDs are spread through skin-to-skin contact in areas not covered by a condom. Condoms may also break, tear or be used incorrectly. These factors put you at risk for contracting STDs, even when condoms are used.
There are many different types of STDs. Some have symptoms, some do not. Safe Harbor Pregnancy Medical Center provides referrals for STD testing for some of the most common STDs. If you think you may be infected, know for sure. Visit our center to learn more about STDs and to be referred for STD testing and treatment.
Men and women who have any other STDs are 2 to 5 times more likely to contract HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). HIV infects cells of the immune system, breaking down the body’s ability to fight off infections and diseases. AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) refers to advanced stages of HIV infections where symptoms may occur.
Chlamydia is the most frequently reported bacterial sexually transmitted disease in the U.S. Any sexually active person can be infected with chlamydia. The greater the number of sex partners, the greater the risk of infection. Because the cervix of teenage girls and young women is not fully matured, they are at particularly high risk for infection.
More than 700,000 people annually in the U.S. are infected with gonorrhea. Many do not have any symptoms. Those who have symptoms often experience a burning sensation when urinating. In women, these symptoms are often mistaken for a bladder or urinary tract infection. Although gonorrhea is curable, if left untreated it can cause serious and permanent health problems in both men and women.
Syphilis is an STD caused by bacteria that is transmitted from person to person by direct contact with syphilis sores. Syphilis is diagnosed by a blood test and is easily treated and cured in its early stages. Untreated syphilis may cause long-term complications and even death.
Roughly 1 in 6 people in the U.S. ages 14 to 49 have a genital herpes infection. Many people are unaware of their infection. Most people do not experience symptoms or they have very mild symptoms that often go unnoticed. Those who have symptoms experience painful genital sores. These outbreaks can be treated with medication, but there is no cure for herpes.
An estimated 3.7 million people in the U.S. have trichomoniasis (trich), a common STD caused by a parasite. Most men and women who are infected don’t experience symptoms. Trichomoniasis can increase the risk of getting or spreading other STDs. It can be easily cured with a prescription antibiotic.