Sexually Transmitted Disease
Sexually transmitted diseases, or STDs, are infections that can be transferred from one person to another through sexual contact.
- Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) affect millions of men and women each year.
- Anyone can become infected through sexual intercourse with an infected person.
- Many of those infected are teenagers or young adults.
- Changing sexual partners adds to the risk of becoming infected.
- Sometimes, early in the infection, there may be no symptoms, or symptoms may be easily confused with other illnesses.
Several symptoms can indicate the possibility of a sexually transmitted disease. If you experience any of these symptoms see your health care provider as soon as possible.
- Unusual vaginal discharge, or any discharge from the rectum or penis.
- Painful intercourse.
- Burning or discomfort during urination.
- Unusual pain or discomfort in the abdomen in women or the testicles in men. Also be aware of any unusual pain in both the buttocks and legs.
- Swelling, blisters, open sores, warts, or a rash in the genital area, on the sexual organs, or in the mouth.
- Flu-like symptoms such as fever, headach, aching muscles, or swollen glands.
Although just having these symptoms does not mean they are caused by a sexually transmitted disease, these symptoms do indicate a potential infection.
Several potential health risks are associated with sexually transmitted diseases or STDs. These include:
- Ectopic or tubal pregnancies which can be fatal to the mother and are always fatal to the unborn baby.
- Babies born to women with sexually transmitted diseases may suffer death or severe damage as a result of the mother's STD.
- Cervical cancer is almost always caused by an STD called the human pappilloma virus or HPV.
- Sometimes sexually transmitted diseases cause damage to other organs including the heart, kidneys, and brain.
- The sad fact is that certain STDS such as HIV or AIDS are eventually fatal.
A partial listing of sexually transmitted diseases
- Chlamydia - Chlamydia is a very dangerous STD as it usually has no symptoms; 75 per cent of infected women and 25 per cent of infected men have no symptoms at all.
- Gonorrhea - Gonorrhea is one of the most frequently reported STD. 40 per cent of it's victims contract PID if not treated, and it can cause sterility.
- Hepatitis B - A vaccine exists, but there's no cure; can cause cancer of the liver. · Herpes - Painful and episodic; can be treated but there's no cure.
- HIV/AIDS - First recognized in 1984, AIDS is the sixth leading cause of death among young men and women. The virus is fatal involving a long, painful death.
- Human Papalloma Virus (HPV) and Genital Warts - The most common STD, 33 per cent of all women have this virus, which can cause cervical or penile cancer and genital pain.
- Syphilis - Untreated, can lead to serious damage of the brain or heart.
- Trichomoniasis - Can cause foamy vaginal discharge or no symptoms at all. Can cause premature birth in pregnant women.
- Other STDs and related conditions.