Do you (or have you ever) had a STD?
There is something I want to talk about in preparation for Valentine’s Day. First of all, whether you are celebrating with someone you love or spending the day loving yourself, I hope it’s a good one for you! I want you to enjoy the holiday and share the love, but DON'T share STDs...okay? Yeah...I went there. You guys know I love talking about alllllll the uncomfortable things!!
The number of outbreaks of STDs in Oklahoma is steadily climbing, so I really want to discuss how to prevent them from getting to you!
The most common STD in Oklahoma is CHLAMYDIA.
The second most common STD in Oklahoma is GONORRHEA.
These are both bacterial infections and they often occur together. Symptoms include vaginal or penile discharge, possibly with an odor, and burning with urination. If left untreated, it can lead to serious complications like...
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- Ectopic pregnancy
- And it can even permanently affect a female's reproductive system.
These STDs are u s u a l l y easy to treat with antibiotics BUT don’t let this fact lead you to being sexually careless - they are still very serious infections!
GENITAL HERPES is another very common STD. It occurs in 1 in 5 people (yep...this is true!) It can occur as...
1) HSV Type 1 which typically affects your mouth and leads to cold sores or
2) HSV Type 2 which typically affects your genital area and leads to painful, contagious lesions.
Herpes is scary because...
1) It never goes away
2) Many people don’t even know they have it and
3) It can be spread even if you don't have any symptoms.
Now, herpes is manageable with antiviral medication and it will help decrease the pain and discomfort that is often associated with both oral and genital outbreaks. It can be a confusing virus, so be open and talk with your healthcare provider about any questions you have.
It is important to remember that the ONLY way to prevent STDs is to avoid sex - vaginal, anal, and oral sex. Avoidance is the only way to be 100% protected. Condoms m a y reduce your risk of contracting an STD, but they are NOT a fool-proof-100%-prevention method. And remember, birth control does NOT protect you against STDs.
As always, if you have any questions or any concerns...come see me! Your visits and our discussions are ALWAYS 100% confidential.