Better safe than sorry….more on sexually transmitted infections.
WHAT ARE SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED INFECTIONS (STIs)
Sexually transmitted infections are, infections that are spread through sexual contact. STIs can cause severe damage to the body and in worst case scenarios they can cause death. Although some STIs can be treated and cured most of them can only be treated and not cured. More than 1 million sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are acquired every day worldwide.
HOW ARE STIs SPREAD?
Many STIs are spread through contact with infected body fluids such as blood, vaginal fluids, or semen. They can also be spread through contact with infected skin or mucous membranes, such as sores in the mouth. You may be exposed to infected body fluids and skin through vaginal, anal or oral sex. Anal sex is very risky because it often causes bleeding. Sharing needles or syringes for drug use, ear piercing, tattooing, etc. can also expose you to infected fluids.
Most STIs are only spread through direct sexual contact with an infected person. However, pubic lice and scabies can be spread through close personal contact with an infected person, or with infested clothes, sheets, or towels
DIFFERENT TYPES OF STIs
There are different types of microorganisms that cause STIs, namely viruses and bacteria.
The following infections are caused by viruses
- Human papillomavirus
- Hepatitis B
And the following are caused by bacteria
STMPTOMS OF STIs
Many STIs may not cause any symptoms. Symptoms vary for each STI, but they include sores or blisters on or around the genital area or in the mouth, pain or burning during urination, unusual discharge from the penis or vagina, itching, swelling, or pain in or around the penis or vagina. If you have any of these symptoms, you could have an STI, but they might also not mean anything serious. Talk to your health care professional right away and get checked out to be safe.
HOW DO I PREVENT GETTING AN STI
Use of latex condoms every time you have vaginal or anal sex, however condoms lubricated with spermicides do not offer any extra protection. Note that condoms are not 100% safe
Limit the number of your sexual partners and know their sexual history. Your partner’s sexual history is as good as your own. The more sexual partners you or your partner has, the higher your risk of getting an STI.
Avoid sharing of sharp objects such as needles, razor blades and scissors.
Avoid risky sexual practices, sexual practices that may tear, or break skin carry a higher risk of STI.
Vaccination for some of the infections is available
STIS can be treated using either antibacterial or antivirals in case of viruses. Some of the STIs can be cured, however, some cannot be cured but are manageable.
Calling all sexually active young people to be safe rather than be sorry #preventgettinganSTI #readandshare