To prevent getting a sexually transmitted disease, or STD, always avoid sex with anyone who has genital sores, a rash, discharge, or other symptoms. The only time unprotected sex is safe is if you and your partner have sex only with each other and if it’s been at least six months since you each tested negative for STDs.
How Can I Prevent STDs?
- Use latex condoms every time you have sex. (If you use a lubricant, make sure it’s water-based.) Use condoms for the entire sex act. Condoms are not 100% effective at preventing disease or pregnancy. However, they are extremely effective if used properly. Learn how to use condoms correctly.
- Avoid sharing towels or underclothing.
- Wash before and after intercourse
- Get a vaccination for hepatitis B (this is a series of three shots)
- Get tested for HIV
- If you have a problem with drug or alcohol abuse, get help. People who are drunk or on drugs often fail to have safe sex.
Consider that not having sex is the only sure way to prevent STDs.
It was once thought that using condoms with nonoxynol-9 helped to prevent STDs by killing the organisms that can cause disease. New research shows that it also irritates a woman’s vagina and cervix and may increase the risk of an STD infection.
How Can I Prevent the Spreading of STDs?
To prevent giving an STD to someone else:
- Stop having sex until you see a doctor and are treated
- Follow your doctor’s instructions for treatment
- Use condoms whenever you have sex, especially with new partners
- Return to your doctor to get rechecked
- Don’t resume having sex unless the doctor says it’s OK
- Be sure your sex partner or partners also are treated.
How are STDs Spread?
You can get an STD by engaging in oral, anal, or vaginal sex with someone who is infected with an STD. Anyone who is sexually active can get an STD, with those who have more than one sexual partner at a heightened risk. If you are engaging in sex with one or more partners, ensure that you are constantly being tested for STDs to prevent further medical complications.
If I get an STD, How Will I Know?
Many people don’t know when they get an STD because some do not cause any symptoms. The only way to know for sure if you have an STD is to get tested. You can get an STD from having sex with someone who has no symptoms, so even if your partner does not show any signs or symptoms, preventative measures such as condoms should always be taken. However, if you suspect you may have contracted an STD, get tested immediately and notify your partner(s).
Can STDs be Treated?
Depending on the STD you have, your doctor can prescribe medicine to potentially cure it. Curable STDs include syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia. Other STDs, such as HIV and herpes, cannot be cured. However, medicine can help with managing symptoms.
If you are ever diagnosed with an STD, it is essential that you finish all of your medicine and follow your doctor’s instructions regarding your treatment. Ensure that you also ask your doctor about testing and treatment for your partner. Both you and your partner should avoid having sex until you both have been treated and provided with a negative test.
What Happens if I Don’t Treat an STD?
Some curable STDs can be dangerous if they aren’t treated. For example, STDS, such as gonorrhea and chlamydia, can make it extremely difficult and even impossible for women to get pregnant. Some STDs, such as HIV, can be fatal if left untreated.
Speak With a Specialist
If you want to learn more about STD prevention, testing, and treatment, contact Women’s Aid Center. We are a non-judgmental clinic focused on ensuring the health and safety of patients while also educating patients on the dangers of STDs and the ways they can prevent them and get treated should they be diagnosed with one. Schedule a consultation with us today.
Last Updated on January 4, 2023 by G