Uncovering STIs

In 2017, STI rates in the U.S. reached a record high 2.29 million cases!
SOURCE: CDC.GOV

Here, you’ll find ways to avoid, detect, and treat STIs. They’re more common and manageable than you might think, and they’re definitely worth talking about!

In 2017, STI rates in the U.S. reached a record high 2.29 million cases!
SOURCE: CDC.GOV

Chlamydia and gonorrhea rates among 15-25 are the highest of any age group in Dallas.
SOURCE: CDC.GOV

HIV/AIDS

HIV/AIDS

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is the virus that causes Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS).

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Hepatitis

Hepatitis

There are several kinds of hepatitis, but hepatitis B is the one most likely to be transmitted sexually.

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Chancroid

Chancroid

Chancroid is a bacterial STI that is only spread through sexual contact. It causes painful ulcers or sores in the genital region.

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Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis is the most common curable STI. It is a protozoan infection that can be treated with antibiotics.

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Human
Papillomavirus
(HPV) and Genital Warts

Human
Papillomavirus
(HPV) and Genital Warts

HPV is the most common STD and at least 50% of sexually active people will get it at some time in their lives.

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Herpes

Herpes

There is no cure for herpes, but certain meds can shorten and prevent outbreaks when taken regularly. Herpes can be transmitted through oral, anal, vaginal sex and through skin-to-skin contact of the infected areas.

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Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea is at an all-time high in Dallas County compared to 10 years ago. HIVSTIProfiles2017.pdf

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Chlamydia

Chlamydia

Chlamydia is a common cause of preventable infertility in the U.S.

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Bacterial
Vaginosis (BV)

Bacterial
Vaginosis (BV)

BV is a vaginal infection caused by an imbalance of bacteria. It can be spread through both sexual, or non-sexual contact.

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Syphilis

Syphilis

If caught early, syphilis can be treated and cured easily with a round of antibiotics.

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Scabies

Scabies

Scabies are parasites that infect the skin. They can be passed just through skin-to-skin contact of any kind, sexual or not.

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Pubic "Crab" Lice

Pubic "Crab" Lice

Pubic lice are parasites that can cause itching, blue spots and sores in the infected area.

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Pelvic
Inflammatory
Disease (PID)

Pelvic
Inflammatory
Disease (PID)

PID is caused by bacteria which often stem from another STD such as chlamydia or gonorrhea.

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Mucopurulent
Cervicitis (MPC)

Mucopurulent
Cervicitis (MPC)

MPC is caused by other STDs such as chlamydia or gonorrhea and may be treatable with antibiotics.

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Molluscum Contagiosum

Molluscum Contagiosum

Molluscum Contagiosum is caused by a virus and will usually go away on its own within a year even without treatment.

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Lymphogranuloma
Venereum (LGV)

Lymphogranuloma
Venereum (LGV)

LGV is fairly uncommon and is most often spread through unprotected anal sex.

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Things to consider
about STIs

STDs and STIs (sexually transmitted diseases/infections) are used interchangeably but have a small difference. Essentially, an infection (STI) does not always lead to a disease (STD). STDs used to be the most commonly-used term, but the term has shifted to STIs in recent years. Here, we’ll keep with the trend and stick to using the term STI.

While the thought of having an STI might scare you, please don’t panic. The first thing you should do is contact a medical provider to get tested ASAP. It’s also best to keep from having any form of sexual contact with someone until you know if you have an STI or not. You can use our Clinic Finder to find a medical provider near you.

The only way to know for sure if you have an STI is to visit a health care provider and get tested. Many individuals may not experience a symptom to indicate they have an infection. There, you’ll receive treatment and learn how to avoid spreading the infection to others. You can learn about symptoms, available treatments and other details with our STI tool.

If you’re sexually active, you should get tested at least once a year or whenever you get a new partner, depending on the number of sexual partners you have and the protection you use. STIs can often go without symptoms (asymptomatic), especially in hard-to-see and hard-to-feel places like the female cervix or the anus, so it’s best to be safe and always get tested.

Using latex or polyurethane condoms (male or female) or dental dams can significantly reduce the risk of contracting or spreading an infection. It is important to remember that there are some STIs, like herpes and HPV, that condoms are less effective at preventing because they can be transmitted through skin-to-skin touching of the genitals that may not be covered by condoms. The only guaranteed protection is abstaining from sexual activity or only having sex with one STI-negative partner.

Abstaining from sexual activity or using protection when having sex. The HPV vaccine is recommended for people between the ages of 9 and 26 and protects against most cancers and genital warts caused by HPV. Generally, 2 doses are recommended to someone before their 15th birthday and 3 are recommended to someone between ages 15 to 26. Male and female condoms provide good protection from many STIs. It is also important to remember that there are some STIs, like herpes and HPV that condoms are less effective at preventing because they can be transmitted through skin-to-skin touching of the genitals that may not be covered by condoms. For those at risk of contracting HIV (people with multiple sexual partners or sharing needles), PrEP (Pre-Exposure prophylaxis) is a daily pill that reduces the risk of contraction by more than 90%. This pill has to be taken every day to be effective.

Yes, but in different ways. Some STIs can be transmitted to the fetus during pregnancy and others may be transmitted during the birth process if the mother has a STI at that time. There are tests available during the early stages of pregnancy to determine whether or not carrying mothers have any STIs. It’s best to talk with your doctor about your risks for STIs and how to reduce the chances of passing them to your baby.

While STIs do not immediately cause infertility, some STIs like chlamydia can prevent pregnancy, especially in repeat cases or in those that have not be treated by a medical health professional. It is important to get tested for STIs regularly and seek treatment for any infections as soon as possible.

Yes they can. Although there is no risk of pregnancy from oral sex, it is still possible for STIs to be transmitted. You can make oral sex even safer by using a latex condom or dental dam. To view a full STI list and discover how each can be transmitted, take a peek at our STI tool.

No. STIs are transmitted from one infected person to another during vaginal, anal or oral sex or through intimate sexual contact (i.e., hand jobs, genital-to-genital contact without penetration, etc.) and direct blood-to-blood contact (i.e. sharing an intravenous needle). To learn more about specific STIs and how they are spread, check out our STI tool.

If you have had unprotected sex, it is important to schedule an appointment with a health care provider as soon as possible and avoid sexual contact until you have been tested and diagnosed. However, keep in mind that some STIs do not show up on tests right away, for example, HIV can take a few weeks to a few months to appear.

Of the approximately 30 STIs identified throughout the world, all are treatable (i.e. helping reduce uncomfortable symptoms) but some are not curable. Check out our STI tool to see a full list of curable and treatable STIs.

Yes. There are tests available for all STIs, except for HPV in men. There are different tests for different STIs, and most are simple and non-invasive. The tests can range from blood or urine samples to vaginal swabs or small samples taken from the infected site (a sore, for example). Find a full STI list and all the test details in our STI tool.