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How Do I Find A Walk In STD Clinic Or STD Testing Near Me?
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Nobody wants to contract a sexually transmittable disease (STD). We are all very much aware of the dangers of unprotected sex, and most of us do try to protect ourselves through the wearing of condoms and other measures. However, sometimes things go wrong and accidents happen. Or perhaps you are now in a committed relationship, and you and your partner both want to make sure that the other person does not have an STD. In that case, you may be wondering “how can I find STD testing near me?”.
What Are STDs?
STDs are caused by viruses and bacteria that are transmitted between humans through sexual intercourse, or by sharing needles. The vast majority of STDs are asymptomatic, or, if they do show symptoms, they mimic those of other illnesses. Consequently, people often don’t get treatment at all, or, if they do, they get the wrong treatment. The problem with this is that it makes it even more likely for them to transmit the bacteria or virus to others.
Despite national awareness campaigns targeting people of all ages, the levels of STDs continue to rise across the country. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were 19 million new cases of STDs a year (2012 figures). Gonorrhea and chlamydia are the two most common illnesses that are reported. Meanwhile, the HPV virus, is found in almost every sexually active woman, and this STD virus is linked to the development of ovarian cancer. Genital warts are also reasonably common. Put together, these illnesses have been linked to a range of different cancers, including the throat (pharynx), penis, vagina, vulva, and anus.
Figures have also shown that, in 2006, some 1,106,400 people were diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. It is also estimated that around 56,300 people become infected with HIV every year in this country alone. HIV/AIDS is perhaps the best known, and most lethal STD, but there are many others as well. Syphilis, for instance, is quite easy to treat, although it can be very dangerous if left untreated. In certain parts of the country, there has been a sharp rise in the number of people diagnosed with syphilis. And, of course, there is the common herpes simplex virus, which manifests itself through cold sores, which is also a form of STD.
Why Are STDs Dangerous?
Different STDs have different potential consequences. Gonorrhea and chlamydia are the most reported STDs and, if left untreated, they can cause infertility in women and men alike. It is also very easy to transmit both diseases.
The HPV virus has different consequences depending on its strain. Generally, it is almost harmless, with only a small chance of fertility issues if left untreated. Treatment may have to be permanent as well.
HIV/AIDS can lay dormant for a long time, and it can be almost fully asymptomatic for years. It is an incurable and life threatening illness, however, and it does require treatment with anti-retroviral drugs for life. The sooner people receive a diagnosis and can start their treatment, the better their quality of life will be. Sexually active people should be tested once per year.
If syphilis is left untreated, it can have a range of negative consequences. These include severe damage to the nervous system, hair loss, and high fevers. Syphilis can easily be treated, fortunately.
Finding a Walk In STD Clinic Near Me
You are responsible for fighting the spread of STDs. The way to do that is to always practice safe sex, which means using protection during anal, oral, and vaginal intercourse. Additionally, you should find an STD testing center, so that you can get tested at least once a year, as well as whenever you feel something may have gone wrong. This is very important, because the vast majority of people who carry STD bacteria or viruses aren’t even aware of it, meaning they spread the illness to others within even realizing it.
Another key factor is to never share needles. In fact, needle sharing is the main reason behind HIV and hepatitis infections. It is also for this reason that there are now many needle return banks, in an effort to stop people from sharing needles, providing them with clean, new ones instead.
Asking yourself “where is a walk in STD clinic near me?” is also a very important step towards breaking the stigma around STDs. Simply by being aware of where clinics are, and being open and honest about that, you may encourage others to find a clinic as well. There are also various online resources that allow you to find STD testing near me, including at home testing.
While nobody will ever be proud of having an STD, the reality is that they are incredibly common. The frightening thing is that the number of people who are infected continues to rise. The main reason for this is not lack of awareness, nor is it that people have become less careful. Rather, it is because most STDs are fully asymptomatic. This means people can walk around with the illness, and spread it, for a very long period of time, without being aware of it.
Ideally, before you engage in any form of sexual intercourse, both you and your partner should have a comprehensive STD test to rule out the presence of those bacteria and viruses. You may think that you are clean because you have no symptoms, but this may not be the case. Furthermore, the government is fully committed to halting the spread of STDs, which is why you should be able to find an affordable center when you inquire where is “STD testing near me”. Not just that, most of these clinics also hand out free condoms or other forms of contraceptives, as well as being a fantastic resource for information on how to stay safe, and what to do if you have concerns.
Do also remember that a huge number of STDs are passed through needle sharing, and not through intercourse. If you do use needles – even if you are diabetic for instance, rather than a drug user – you should get tested. Locate an std testing center near you by clicking the blue button below.