What is An STD?

A sexually transmitted disease (STD) is a pathogenic infection caused by bacteria, viruses, or parasites that spread from one person to another and can cause harmful health effects. These infections may go unnoticed or mimic other conditions. If you are at risk of acquiring an STD, testing and treatment are necessary to maintain good health. 

How Are STDs Spread? 

STDs are typically spread from one person to another through sexual contact. Anyone who participates in sexual conduct is at risk of contracting an STD. However, an increased risk occurs when: 

  • Having unprotected sex
  • Having sexual contact with multiple partners
  • Having a history of STDs
  • Being forced to engage in sexual activity; dealing with rape or assault is difficult, but seeing a doctor as soon as possible is important to receive screening, treatment, and emotional support
  • Misuse of alcohol or use of recreational drugs; substance misuse can inhibit judgment, making you more willing to participate in risky behaviors
  • Injecting drugs
  • Being young (ages 15-24)

What Are The Symptoms and Complications? 

Many times, symptoms go unrecognized or remain silent. If you are at risk, getting tested is essential in knowing about infection, and seeking immediate treatment is necessary. 

Depending on if symptoms do present and the type of infection, some signs and symptoms may be: 

  • Sores or bumps on the genitals or in the oral or rectal area
  • Painful or burning urination
  • Discharge from the penis
  • Unusual or odorous vaginal discharge
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding
  • Pain during sex
  • Sore, swollen lymph nodes, particularly in the groin but sometimes more widespread
  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Fever
  • A rash over the trunk, hands, or feet

Complications that can arise are: 

  • Pelvic pain
  • Pregnancy complications
  • Eye inflammation
  • Arthritis
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Infertility
  • Heart disease
  • Certain cancers, such as HPV-associated cervical and rectal cancers

No-Cost STD testing

We at Oasis Women’s Services can help you get the answers you need with no-cost STD testing today. We’re here for you. Schedule an appointment today.