STD Testing 101: When to get a screening

Most adults in the U.S will likely need to get an STD test or screening because of the high rate of STDs in the country. Current statistics indicate that there are 2.2 million new cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis combined each year.

The chances of getting an STD also increase significantly among sexually active adults. Abstinence is the most effective way to prevent an STD, but individuals that want to engage in sexual activity can still actively prevent their chance of getting an STD.

So what the risk factors for STDs and when is it appropriate for you to get a screening?

High-risk behaviors such as frequent drug use and engaging in intercourse with multiple partners

Your chances of getting an STD are likely to go up if you participate in a variety of high-risk behaviors. These behaviors primarily include:

  • Having unprotected sex
  • Having multiple sexual partners over a short period of time
  • Having sex while under the influence of drugs of alcohol
  • Frequent drug use

Unprotected sex with multiple partners will lead to a greater chance of an STD as more and more individuals could likely have an STD. Additionally, drug and alcohol use may impair judgement and lead to more risky sexual behavior. Even the use of some recreational drugs can transmit STDs such as needles shared between infected and non-infected users.

STD prevention requires cutting back on certain behaviors

STD prevention is relatively simple and usually requires limiting certain behaviors and risk factors. Reducing drug and alcohol use and engaging with a lower amount of sexual partners helps to reduce key risks. In addition, consult a nearby medical provider about your sexual history and see if they recommend a screening.

However, sometimes an STD may be unavoidable and require necessary treatment from a nearby urgent care center or a similar provider.

If you’re unsure then get an updated STD screening

If you believe you have an STD for any reason, then make sure that you get an updated screening in the near future. That way you can alleviate any stress or doubt about your STD history.

Screenings are relatively straightforward and usually help to detect multiple STDs at once. The best resources to get an updated STD testing are walk-in clinics and urgent care centers, since they provide the best rates for screenings. Additionally, patients near Arlington, MA should visit AFC Urgent Care Arlington for their STD needs. We provide discrete and private screenings to help identify any STDs you may have.


3700 Cahaba Beach Road Birmingham, AL 35242

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Our mission is to provide the best healthcare possible in a kind and caring environment, in an economical manner, while respecting the rights of all of our patients, at times and locations convenient to the patient.

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