Sexually Transmitted Infections

Man and woman fighting about sexually transmitted infections

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), also known as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), are extremely common.  In fact, the World Health Organization estimates that there are 1 million new cases of an STI being acquired every single day.

There is a huge social stigma surrounding sexually transmitted infections.  This stigma leads to serious anxiety and embarrassment surrounding these infections.

It is very important to get past this embarrassment and get yourself treated.  There is also an obligation the inform your sexual partners or your local public health officials so that any sexual contacts can be informed.  Your sexual partners will also need to be treated for the infection.

Some STIs can be asymptomatic, meaning you or your sexual partner may not even know that you dare infected.  In both cases there can be serious health consequences.  These infections can do damage even without causing symptoms.

For example, HPV can lead to cervical cancer in women.  Bacterial STIs can lead to female infertility, pelvic inflammatory disease and adverse effects on pregnancy.

Sexually Transmitted Infections include:

  • syphilis
  • gonorrhea
  • chlamydia
  • genital warts/human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • HIV
  • genital herpes
  • crabs or pubic lice
  • hepatitis B
  • trichomoniasis
  • chancroid

The absolute number one method for preventing STIs is the use of condoms.  To prevent yourself and your sexual partners for getting sexually transmitted diseases use a condom.

Symptoms of STIs include:

  • burning sensation when urinating/pain when urinating
  • fluid or discharge flowing out of the penis
  • bumps or sores on the penis or vagina
  • bumps or sores in the mouth or perianal area
  • irregular or strange-smelling vaginal discharge/fluid
  • unexpected vaginal bleeding
  • painful sensation during sexual intercourse
  • lymph nodes that are tender and enlarged (especially if in the groin region)
  • pain in the lower abdominal region
  • feeling hot/feverish
  • unexpected or unusual rashes

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms of sexually transmitted infections it is very important to been seen by a medical practitioner to determine the cause.  Treatment with antibiotics or other antiinfective agents may be necessary.

To learn about other embarrassing health issues please visit our Conditions page.