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VF Blog: The Causes of STDs and Their Treatment

26th May 2021

Vattikuti Foundation

VF Blog: The Causes of STDs and Their Treatment

Are you experiencing STD (sexually transmitted disease) symptoms?

Photo courtesy: Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition on Unsplash

What Are STDs?

‘STDs’ is short for sexually transmitted diseases. These diseases spread via various sexual activities. The contact can be oral, vaginal, or anal. However, some may be transmitted via close physical contact of the skin as well such as herpes or human papillomavirus (HPV).  They vary according to their intensity and ability to be cured. HIV and Hepatitis B for example are chronic forms of STDs that may be manageable but not curable.

Types of Sexually Transmitted Diseases

There are over 20 types of STDs. They can be bacterial, parasitic, or viral in nature. The most common ones however are as follows:

Bacterial STDs:

Chlamydia

Symptoms:

o Painful urination

o Vaginal discharge in women and penis discharge in men

o Painful intercourse

o Testicular pain in men

Syphilis

Symptoms:

o Sores or rash around the mouth or genital area

o Swollen lymph glands

o Fever

o Weight loss

Gonorrhea

Symptoms:

o Painful urination

o Lower back or abdominal pain

o Vaginal discharge in women

o Painful intercourse

o Itchiness and soreness

Viral STDs:

Herpes

Symptoms:

o Painful and itchy blisters, sores, or ulcers – Either around the mouth (oral) or around the genitals

o Fever

o Headache

HPV (Human Papilloma Virus)

Symptoms:

o Genital warts

o HPV can also be the cause of cervical cancer

Parasitic STDs:

HIV/AIDS (Human Immune Deficiency Virus or All Immune Deficiency Syndrome)

Symptoms:

o Recurrent Fever

o Recurrent oral or yeast infections

o Fatigue and weakness

o Swollen lymph nodes

o Skin rashes

What Causes STDs and Why Are They So Common?

STDs are common for a number of reasons:

1. The organisms (virus, bacteria, or parasite) which carry the STD are hidden in semen, blood, saliva, or vaginal/rectal fluid

2. Unprotected sexual intercourse also leads to the spread of STDs

3. They can also be transmitted non sexually e.g. via shared needles, blood transfusion, or from the mother to fetus during pregnancy

4. Their contagious nature makes them easily transmissible from one person to another e.g. skin to skin contact with someone having active herpes or warts

Treatment – Here’s What to Do

If you notice any of the symptoms post sexual or potential physical contact, here’s what you can do:

1. Book an appointment with your physician for a full screening – urine sample collection, blood test, or swab of genital, rectum, or throat

2. You may be prescribed an antibiotic medication depending on the type of STD – these usually work for bacterial and parasitic STDs

3. Viral STDs may be recurring and may require medication to lower transmission and manage symptom

How to Stay Safe – Using precautions Is Important

To minimize the risk of developing or catching an STD, it is important to take precautions and stay proactive when it comes to sexual health.

Here’s what you can do:

1. Using contraceptives such as condoms during vaginal or anal sex

2. Use of dental dams during oral sex

3. Regular screening and checkups for STDs especially if you have multiple partners

4. Get vaccinated for HPV and Hepatitis B

5. Discuss your sexual history with your partner and get tested – most STDs show minimal to no symptoms

We hope that with all the aforementioned information on causes of STDs, you found something worth your while!

Disclaimer:

Please note: this blog post is provided for informational purposes and is not intended to replace the guidance of your personal physician. Please consult a medical professional if you have any concerns after reading this or other blog posts on this website.

For more interesting articles, please visit the VFRSI website News Section:  https://vfrsi.vattikutifoundation.com/latestnews

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