STD / STI
STD / STI (sexually transmitted diseases like gonorrhea, chlamydia, herpes, syphilis, etc)
STD / STI are sexually transmitted diseases / infection.
It is a very broad term used for infections that are spread by sexual intercourse. HIV, chlamydia, genital herpes, genital warts, gonorrhea, some forms of hepatitis, syphilis, and trichomoniasis are STDs. They were formerly called VD (venereal disease).
STDs are transmitted during sexual intercourse, which include vaginal, oral and anal sex. STDs may transmit through any of these routes. Hence a condom used only during vaginal sex (and discarding it during oral sex or anal sex) will not protect one from STD.
You are at high risk for STDs if:
- You have more than one sex partner
- You have sex with someone who has had many partners
- You do not use a condom when having sex
- You share needles when injecting intravenous drugs
- You trade sex for money or drugs
One should note that these are high risk for STDs. But, even without these high risks one can still get STD when a person has unprotected sex with another person who has STD, in the absence of all the high risks.
Among the STDs, HIV and herpes are chronic conditions that can be managed but not cured, but treatment to allay the symptoms and reduce progression of the disease is still available.
Hepatitis B also may become chronic but can be managed.
Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is a complication of gonorrhea and chlamydia that can leave women unable to have children.
At times you may not realize you have certain STDs, as there are times you may be asymptomatic (no symptoms).
The various types of STDs include:
Bacterial STDs – chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis.
Viral STDs – HIV, genital herpes, genital warts (HPV / Human Papilloma Virus), molluscum contagiosum, and Hepatitis B.
Parasites – Trichomoniasis, pubic lice.
Common symptoms of STDs
- unusual discharge from the vagina, penis or anus
- pain when urinating
- lumps or skin growths around the genitals or anus
- a rash
- unusual vaginal bleeding
- itchy genitals or anus
- blisters and sores around the genitals or anus