We all know that STDs can be embarrassing and uncomfortable. No one wants to think about contracting an STD, much less talk about it. Unfortunately, if you’re a woman, STDs pose a very real threat to your health. Here’s what every woman needs to know about their health and sexually transmitted diseases:
Every woman needs to know about their health and sexually transmitted diseases:
1.Most Common STDs
There are several STDs being passed from person to person, but there are those that occur most commonly in women. These are chlamydia, gonorrhea, genital herpes, syphilis and HIV/AIDS. The rate of infection of chlamydia in women surpasses that in men by two and a half times. Likewise, women are more likely to contract gonorrhea and genital herpes than their male counterparts. Of the common STDs, only syphilis and HIV/AIDS occur more often in men.
As a woman, when you are infected with an STD, you are more vulnerable to infection from a second STD. While you are infected with your initial STD, vaginal tissues are inflamed, blood vessels can be injured and you are thus more susceptible to viruses and bacteria. As an example, you are more likely to contract HIV while you are dealing with a first STD than you are if you were otherwise healthy.
As a woman, you are more likely to experience serious consequences alongside your infection. These include infertility, ectopic pregnancy, PID, or pelvic inflammatory disease, heart disease, neurological problems, cervical cancer and increase risk of the contraction of HIV. The worst case scenario, in the cases of untreated HIV and syphilis, is death. If you have contracted an STD, it is important that you get over your embarrassment and seek medical attention immediately.
4.Risks to Newborns
You must consider the risk to your infant if you are infected with syphilis, herpes, HIV or hepatitis B. Any of these infections can be passed along to your child while in the womb or during the birthing process, particularly in the case of herpes. Your infection can result in a premature birth, a stillbirth or the death of your baby soon after birth. If your baby survives the birthing process, he or she is still at risk for birth defects, blindness, and, ultimately, a lifetime of infection.
5.Reducing Your Risk of Contracting an STD
There are ways to reduce your risk of contracting an STD that are incredibly effective. The first step is to maintain a mutually monogamous relationship. By limiting your number of partners, you’re reducing your risk of contracting any STDs. Even when you maintain a monogamous relationship, you should use a new condom each time you have sexual intercourse. No matter how many partners you’ve had, if you are sexually active, you should be tested for STDs at least annually. Get tested immediately if you have any symptoms of an STD.
While STDs are serious for both genders, women typically suffer more long-lasting effects. Not only will an STD put your own health at risk, but it will put the health of your future children at risk. By practicing safe sex, limiting your number of partners and receiving annual testing, you will be as protected as possible from these harmful infections.