Most people are concerned about their overall health and wellbeing, and living a healthy life to the fullest. Yet many individuals, especially sexually active young adults, are not as concerned about contracting or carrying a sexually transmitted disease (STD) as they should be.
Recent statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that the number of reported cases of new STD infections is on the rise across the entire United States. More specifically, one in six Americans is infected with an STD today. The American Social Health Organization estimates that one out of four teenagers in the U.S. become infected with an STD every year and that by the age of 25, half of all sexually active young adults will have contracted an STD.
More alarmingly, these statistics understate the actual rate of STD infection across the country because there are roughly an equal number of unreported cases of STDs as reported cases, and many people are infected with an STD such as herpes but are unaware that they are infected.
There are a number of STDs that can be contracted today, some more common than others. Some of these STDs pose a serious medical threat to your health both in the short term and later on in life. Other STDs are more benign and are less threatening to your overall health. However, all STDs should be diagnosed and treated appropriately.
How can you determine if you are infected with an STD or not? To begin with, if you are sexually active with multiple partners and practice unprotected sex, then you are at high risk of contracting an STD. The symptoms of an STD vary from one disease to another, and sometimes there are no symptoms at all. If symptoms are present they many include one or more of the following:
· Itching near the genitals
· Bumps, sores or warts near the mouth or genitals
· Swelling or redness near the genitals
· Pain when urinating
· Fluid discharges
· Yellowing of the skin (jaundice)
· Aches, fever, chills
· Painful sex
· Skin rash
· Weight loss
· Loose stools
· Night sweats
STDs are a serious illness with severe health consequences that require diagnosis and treatment early. Some STDs, such as HIV, cannot be cured and can be fatal. If you exhibit one or more of the above symptoms, you should see your doctor and be examined for an STD.
If you think you have contracted an STD or know someone who has, the best course of action is to see a doctor as soon as possible as get tested. Only a medical examination and testing can confirm with certainty that you have contracted an STD or not. Also, once diagnosed with an STD, your medical professional will determine the best course of action to treat and/or cure the disease.
While many people think they know what a sexually transmitted disease (STD) is, or think they know a lot about STDs, in truth most people know only a little about STDs, what they are and how they are transmitted. Most people have heard of the common STDs in our population today, but there are other STDs that are less prevalent or less well known.
In general, an STD is an infectious disease or infection, also referred to as a sexually transmitted infection (STI), that is spread from person to person through skin-to-skin contact that can be casual in nature, like a friendly peck on the check, or more intimate. STDs can be caused by bacteria or a virus. STDs affect men and women equally regardless of race, geography, sexual preference, age, social status or any other demographic identifier. STDs are easily spread and once you are infected, the disease can lay dormant for periods of time, becoming active periodically often during times of stress.
Symptoms of an STD can include itching and sores on the infected area, usually around the genitals or mouth, pain when urinating, and fluid discharges. However, many people carry an STD and experience no symptoms or show no visible signs of the infection. This is one of the reasons they spread so easily.
There are many different types of STDs ranging from the benign to very malignant and harmful ones. Some are treatable and others are incurable today. Most people are aware of today’s common STDs, but some STDs are less well known and equally as harmful to your health. Following is a list of the more well-known STDS:
• Chlamydia – a very common and easily curable STD that can lead to infertility if left untreated
• Gonorrhea – a treatable STD only transmitted through sexual activity
• Herpes – two versions of the herpes simplex virus exist: genital herpes and oral herpes, most people infected with genital herpes are unaware they have the disease
• Syphilis – one of the oldest known STDs and easily treatable with antibiotics, untreated it can cause severe symptoms and health issues
• Hepatitis B – can cause serious health issues if untreated
• Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) – a lethal virus that attacks the immune system, there is currently no known cure
• Genital warts – caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV), are not dangerous but are easily transmitted and require immediate treatment
One common misconception is that STDs can only be spread through sexual intercourse. This is not the case. An STD can be spread through any casual skin-to-skin contact involving an infected area or sore. This is one of the reasons for the recent rapid spread of the herpes virus, especially among teenagers. STDs also spread more easily than people are aware because often it is difficult to tell whether someone is infected or not. Many people have an STD and are unaware of it. These people are highly likely to pass along their STD to others.
There is a wealth of information available on the internet regarding STDs, what they are, their symptoms and known treatments. Use good judgment in researching reputable or medical sites. If you think you have contracted an STD or know someone who has, the best course of action is to see a doctor as soon as possible.
Dating is hard for people who are living with herpes. When meeting someone new there is always the nagging question of when to let them know that you have herpes, and of course concern about their reaction. The social stigma of any STD can be painful and unfair.
The dating experts at the world’s number one herpes dating site, PositiveSingles.com, offer the following valuable and insightful dating tips for people with herpes.
• Be open and honest early in the relationship
If you’ve met someone new and believe that there is potential for a connection and relationship, let them know sooner rather than later about your herpes status. Being upfront and disclosing your status lets them know that you are honest about yourself and concerned about their health. It they are receptive to the situation, let the relationship unfold naturally while taking appropriate precautions to protect your partner. If they are concerned and have questions, you have the opportunity to educate them and alleviate those concerns. If they have a real issue with the situation, it’s better to stop the relationship early and save both of you wasted time and hard feelings.
• Educate yourself to better protect you and your partner
Learn about the facts of herpes, what it means to live with the disease, how to recognize the signs of an outbreak, the best herpes treatments, and how to best protect your partner. Being fully informed makes you more comfortable with yourself, allows you to educate others and dispel false perceptions, and helps you better protect your partner’s health and put them at ease.
• Always practice safe sex
Always use a latex condom for any sexual activity. If you are about to have an outbreak, or are having an outbreak, refrain from having sex. Wait until all sores are completely healed before resuming sexual activity. Use Valtrex daily to minimize the risk of spreading herpes.
• Have your partner tested regularly
To ensure the success of practicing safe sex, and to reassure your partner that their health is a top priority, have your partner tested monthly or every other month.
• Be Positive!
Most importantly, always be positive. Be positive about yourself, your partner and your relationship. Seek out the advice and support of others who can provide support and encouragement.
While these tips may seem obvious, most people dating with herpes don’t follow all of them. Following these dating tips, taking the best care of yourself and your partner, and being responsible will all contribute to a stronger and healthier relationship.For people experiencing difficulties in meeting others and building relationships, there is a herpes dating website that provides a safe and welcoming environment for STD-positive singles. Launched in 2002, PositiveSingles.com is a dating and support community designed for people with herpes, HPV, HIV/AIDS or any other STD. It is a community where members can stay positive, and find love, support and hope.
PositiveSingles.com is the best, largest, most trusted and completely anonymous online dating site for people with herpes, HPV, HIV, AIDS and other STDs. No member is required to submit any information that would make them uncomfortable. All personal information remains private and anonymous until the member decides otherwise. Membership at PositiveSingles.com is available to all STD-positive singles regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, or gender.
More and more people are becoming affected with a sexually transmitted disease (STD) of one form or another due in some part to the widespread popularity over the past several years of online dating sites and apps. Without singles disclosing their health status prior to dating, this creates a growing health concern for all actively dating singles.
Fortunately, there is a dating website that provides a safe and welcoming environment for STD-positive singles. Founded in 2002 and with over 1,050,000 registered members, PositiveSingles.com is the largest global STD dating site and community for people living with herpes, HIV, HPV and other STDs. For over fourteen years, the website has been providing positive support and encouragement for people with an STD, as well as a safe environment for those individuals to meet and connect with other local singles.
Based on data from the PositiveSingles.com website, the top twenty states represented in its membership are, in descending order of number of members:
New York 51926
North Carolina 23328
New Jersey 17064
This distribution of members is well spread across the entire nation, providing ample opportunity for people to meet others with the same or similar health situation.
Additional statistics available from PositiveSingles.com shows the following breakdown of the percentage of the population in the United States with a diagnosed STD by age group:
• 18 to 34 years old: 31.5%
• 35 to 50 years old: 39.6%
• 51 to 50 years old: 11.9%
• 60+ years old: 17.0%
“We are pleased to offer a safe and inclusive community for STD-positive singles to meet others, connect, and share their experiences,” PositiveSingles.com spokesperson said. “Much more than the world’s largest STD dating site, our website also offers support and encouragement for people with an STD. We are a caring and compassionate community of members that offer advice and support for each other. Whether looking for a soul mate that completely understands your health situation or seeking herpes dating advice and support, PositiveSingles.com has something for everyone.”