Recognizing Sexual Health Red Flags: The Importance of Getting Tested for STDs/STIs

April 2, 2024

The Importance of STD and STI screening before having unprotected sex

STDs and STIs are prevalent in our society, with terms often used interchangeably despite their technical differences. These infections can be transmitted through various forms of sexual contact, including vaginal, oral, and anal intercourse. Complicating matters, some infections may remain asymptomatic for extended periods, posing a serious risk of transmission.

In recognition of April's STD and STI awareness month, AFC Urgent Care Vernon aims to shed light on these conditions. While we understand the stigma and discomfort associated with STD/STI testing, your health remains our priority. Ignoring or neglecting treatment for an STD/STI can lead to severe long-term consequences, emphasizing the importance of proactive testing.

Know Your STD/STI:

STDs and STIs encompass a broad spectrum of conditions. Here are some common ones to be aware of:

  • Bacterial Vaginosis (BV): A treatable vaginal condition that heightens the risk of contracting an STD.
  • Chlamydia: A prevalent yet treatable STD that, if untreated, can hinder fertility in women.
  • Gonorrhea: Another common STD that, when properly medicated, can be managed; however, untreated cases may lead to serious health complications.
  • Syphilis: Left untreated, syphilis can cause severe health issues, although it is curable with appropriate treatment.
  • Herpes: Genital herpes, often asymptomatic, can be managed with medications to reduce outbreaks and transmission.
  • Hepatitis: Viral hepatitis, a leading cause of liver cancer, underscores the importance of vaccination and preventive measures.

Note: Some infections may not exhibit symptoms, highlighting the necessity of testing even in the absence of noticeable signs.

Updated CDC Statistics on STDs/STIs:

The latest data from the CDC indicates the following trends:

  • Chlamydia: 1.7 million cases (up 5% from 2022)
  • Gonorrhea: 700,000 cases (up 3% from 2022)
  • Syphilis: 140,000 cases (up 4% from 2022)
  • Congenital Syphilis: 2,300 cases (up 7% from 2022)

Remember, STDs/STIs can manifest without symptoms, underscoring the importance of prevention. Consider these preventive measures:

  • Condom Use: Consistent and proper use of condoms significantly reduces transmission risk.
  • Abstinence: Avoiding sexual activity remains the most effective preventive measure.
  • Vaccination: Vaccines for hepatitis B and HPV offer safe and effective protection.
  • Partner Reduction: Limiting sexual partners reduces the risk of STD transmission.
  • Mutual Monogamy: Committing to exclusive sexual relationships minimizes exposure to STDs.

Confidential STD/STI Testing at AFC Urgent Care Vernon:

AFC Urgent Care Vernon prioritizes offering inclusive sexual health services and support to empower you with knowledge and protection. Take charge of your sexual health today for a healthier tomorrow.

We're available seven days a week, welcoming walk-ins. If you prefer the convenience of scheduling an appointment via your phone, that option is also accessible. AFC Urgent Care Vernon accepts most insurance plans, and our streamlined online payment system ensures a seamless check-in and check-out process. We are committed to serving you.

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