Sexually Transmitted Diseases: Basic Things To Know About STDs

Sexually Transmitted Diseases, with the acronym, STDs are becoming a serious threat to lives recently. There are basic things to know about STDs as the development of resistant strains of the causative organisms is in a rise. Anyway, there’s a good news as this article will show you the basic things to know about STDs.

What Are STDs?

STDs/STIs are infections that are passed from one person to another during vaginal, anal, and oral sex. They’re really common, and lots of people who have them don’t have any symptoms. Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) can be dangerous, but the good news is that getting tested is no big deal. Most Sexually Transmitted Diseases are easy to treat.

Although, typical Bacterial STDs can be cured with specific antibiotics, if you begin the treatment early enough. But Viral STDs (like HIV) cannot be cured yet, but can be managed with medications. Which will also help suppress the symptoms. Even though a vaccine against Hepatitis B is available, it won’t work if you already have the disease.

Basic Things To Know About STDs | Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Having a good knowledge about the strange changes contrary to the normal physiological changes going on in your body is very essential. This can help suppress the progress of a disease or totally arrest it leading a complication free heathy living. Below are the basic things to know about STDs.

・Gonorrhea and Chlamydia:

Gonorrhea is one of the most common Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and can lead to infertility in men and women. It is both treatable and preventable, though scientists have discovered a new strain of gonorrhea that is resistant to all currently utilized antibiotics.Many people with gonorrhea don’t have any symptoms. Those who do might notice unusual discharge from the penis or vagina and/or pain or difficultly peeing. Men may have swelling in their testicles and women may bleed in between periods. If left untreated, gonorrhea can cause infertility without ever showing symptoms. It can also spread to the blood and joints.

Chlamydia is one of the most common STDs and is the leading cause of preventable infertility. If left untreated, Chlamydia may also lead to pelvic inflammatory disease and the risk of ectopic pregnancy in women. Chlamydia is both treatable and preventable. Most people with Chlamydia don’t have any symptoms, but those who do might have unusual genital discharge and/or pain and burning when urinating. Women may also have lower back or abdominal pain, nausea, pain during sex, or bleeding after sex and/or between periods.

Gonorrhea and chlamydia are bacterial STIs that can be cured with antibiotics, either orally or by injection. Gonorrhea and Chlamydia often occur together, people who have just one of them are usually treated for both by their doctor. Sexual partners should be treated of the infection at the same time.

・Genital Herpes:

Herpes is a common Sexually Transmitted Disease and a lot of people who have it don’t even know. There is no cure for herpes, but there is treatment that can lessen symptoms and decrease the likelihood of passing it on to someone else. Most of the time herpes doesn’t cause any symptoms. When there are signs, they can include blisters around the genitals or anus. The first outbreak of sores is usually the worst. A person with herpes may have additional outbreaks of sores weeks or months after the first outbreak. These additional outbreaks are less severe, heal faster and occur less often over time.

Genital herpes eruptions can always be treated with antiviral drugs. This medication should help in limiting the length and asperity of subsequent outbreaks, but it definitely won’t cure the infection. Additionally, daily suppressive therapy with use of the antiviral medication for herpes can totally reduce the chances of transmission to partners.

Pregnant women should be very careful when they get the infection because they can easily transmit the infection to their baby during childbirth. Women who got the virus during pregnancy are at a higher risk of transmitting it to their baby. If the doctor notices a pregnant woman has the outbreak in the labour room, then she is advised to have a cesarean section (C-section) to protect her child from contacting the virus during childbirth.

・Human Papillomavirus (HPV):

HPV is the most common STD and at least 50% of sexually active people will get it at some time in their lives. The body usually clears HPV on its own without causing any problems, but HPV can lead to certain kinds of cancer. Most of the time there are no symptoms and the virus clears on its own, but several types can cause genital warts or lead to vaginal, anal, throat and cervical cancer. The types of HPV that cause warts do not cause cancer. But they can indicate a higher risk for having the types of HPV that are linked to cancer.

Someone who has an HPV infection can never be cured, well at least not yet. However, the HPV infection can totally be prevented with vaccination. Furthermore, your doctor should be able to treat the genital warts caused by the virus.

・Genital Warts:

There is no specific treatment for genital warts. Most genital warts might totally disappear without any treatment, so your doctor may decide to do nothing but to give it time. Although, you will still be able to transmit it to sex partners, because the disease is still in you. To treat genital warts, you have various options. You can freeze the warts by applying specific medication directly to them, your doctor will help with that. If they don’t respond then surgery may be necessary to remove them. But still keep in mind that after the surgery, you still have the infection, and you can still give it to others.

・Syphilis:

Syphilis is spread by contact with open sores (usually during sex). If left untreated it can cause serious health problems, including brain and nervous system damage, blood infection and even death. Early signs may include a small, painless, firm sore in or around the vagina, penis, mouth or anus. This can be followed by rash on the body that is particularly noticeable on the palms of the hands or soles of the feet. Other, less common signs and symptoms may include fever, swollen lymph glands, sore throat, patchy hair loss, headaches, weight loss, muscle aches, and fatigue.

If spotted during the early stages, typically within the first year of infection, the disease can easily be treated with just a singular intramuscular injection of antibiotic. When someone is being treated for syphilis, you are advised to not be sexually active until the sores caused by the bacteria are absolutely healed, so you won’t transmit it to other people.

If you didn’t spot the infection on time or you didn’t go for treatment immediately, much longer treatment with antibiotics may be substantial. If you have no idea about the infection and it progresses even further, it will potentially cause death. Generally, antibiotics can stop the infection from getting worse, but they can’t do much if the damage has already occurred.

・Bacterial Vaginosis

Bacterial Vaginosis is the most common vaginal infection in women of reproductive age and it occurs when there is an overgrowth of certain “bad” bacteria in the vagina. It occurs when the balance between “good” and “harmful” bacteria is thrown off. Often there are no symptoms at all, but sometimes  bacterial vaginosis is accompanied by unusual discharge, strong odor, painful urination, itching, or burning.

Bacterial vaginosis can easily be treated with antibiotics, typically metronidazole or clindamycin. Although, male sexual partners of women with the disease do not need to be treated. Treatment of male partners doesn’t reduce any risk of recurrence.

Treatment during pregnancy is highly recommended, mainly for women at high risk for preterm labor or having a low birth weight baby.

・Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis is the most common curable STI. Millions of people are infected each year in the United States. Signs in women include excessive, frothy, yellowish or greenish vaginal discharge. There may also be swelling of the vulva and labia along with painful urination. Symptoms in men may include painful urination with lesions on the penis, but most men with trichomoniasis will have no symptoms.

Trichomoniasis can be easily be treated with a single dose of an antibiotic, typically metronidazole or tinidazole, taken orally. Though the disease usually reoccurs, so it is very necessary to make sure that you and your sexual partner are treated immediately when diagnosed with this infection.

・Viral Hepatitis

There are three different kinds of hepatitis, some of which are spread more easily than others. Hepatitis A, B and C can all be transmitted sexually, however hepatitis B is the type most likely to be sexually transmitted. All types of hepatitis are serious and affect the liver. Hepatitis B and C are the leading cause of liver cancer and are the most common reason for liver transplants.

Hepatitis A virus (HAV):

This affects the liver and may cause abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting. Normally the infection should go on its own without any treatment. But in rear cases, however, a person might experience lasting damage to their livers or may have uncompromising nausea and vomiting that they need to be admitted to the hospital.

・Hepatitis B virus (HBV):

This causes a prolong infection but can be well treated with antiviral medications. People with HBV infection are advised to see a liver specialist with lots experience treating people with chronic liver disease. You also need to be careful not to transmit the virus to your sexual partner. If not, the sexual partner might have to receive hepatitis B vaccine, that’s if they are not already immune.

・Hepatitis C Virus:

This can cause immediate illness, either infecting the liver or more typically a silent, chronic infection. Like hepatitis B, individuals may have a prolong infection and will always be at risk of transmitting the virus to their sexual partners. Although treatments are available that can suppress the infection in most cases.

・HIV/AIDS

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), the virus that causes Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), is transmitted by blood and body fluids. Most HIV infections do not have any symptoms. A person infected with HIV can remain healthy and symptom-free for many years. If HIV leads to AIDS, serious symptoms can develop and can ultimately lead to death. Signs and symptoms may include everything from fever and rashes to lesions, soaking night sweats and blurred vision.

There is no cure for HIV/AIDS yet. However, current research into new treatments and medications has totally ameliorated outcomes for people living with the disease. A combination of specific antiretroviral drugs can be prescribed in a highly active antiretroviral therapy to suppress and control the virus, promote a very healthy immune system, make people living with the virus live longer lives and completely reduce the risk of transmission.

Hope these common things to do to treat STDs has helped alleviate the fear for this menace. Life can be just amazing and beautiful by doing just this.

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