Skin Diseases - Sexually transmitted diseases

Sexually transmitted diseases

What is a sexually transmitted infection (STI)?

An STI is an infection passed from one person to another person through sexual contact. An infection is when a bacteria, virus, or parasite enters and grows in or on your body. STIs are also called sexually transmitted diseases, or STDs.

How do you get STIs?

STIs are spread in the following ways:

  • Having unprotected (without a condom) vaginal, oral, or anal sex with someone who has an STI. It can be difficult to tell if someone has an STI. STIs can be spread even if there are no signs or symptoms.
  • During genital touching. It is possible to get some STIs, such as syphilis and herpes, without having sex.
  • Through sexual contact between women/man who have sex only with other women/man.
  • From a pregnant or breastfeeding woman to her baby.

What are the symptoms of STIs?

Many STIs have only mild symptoms or no symptoms at all. Symptoms, they may be mistaken for something else, such as a urinary tract infection or yeast infection. Get tested so that you can be treated for the correct infection.

How do I get tested for STIs?

Ask your doctor or nurse about getting tested for STIs. Your doctor or nurse can tell you what test(s) you may need and how they are done. Testing for STIs is also called STI screening.

STI testing can include:

  • Pelvic and physical exam.
  • Blood test.
  • Urine test.
  • Fluid or tissue sample

Women are a bit more likely than men to get rosacea. Women, however, are not as likely as men to get severe rosacea. Some people are more likely to get rosacea, but anyone can get this skin disease. People of all colors get rosacea.

How are STIs treated?

For some STIs, treatment may involve taking medicine by mouth or getting a shot.

If I have an STI, does my partner have it too?

Maybe. If the tests show that you have an STI, your doctor might want your partner to come in for testing. Or the doctor may give you a medicine to take home for your partner.

The STI may have spread to you or your partner from a former sex partner.

How can I prevent an STI?

If you do have sex, lower your risk of getting an STI with the following steps:

  • Get vaccinated. Against HPV and hepatitis B.
  • Use condoms.
  • Get tested. Be sure you and your partner are tested for STIs.
  • Be monogamous. Having sex with just one partner can lower your risk for STIs.
  • Do not douche. Douching removes some of the normal bacteria in the vagina that protects you from infection. This may increase your risk of getting STIs.
  • Do not abuse alcohol or drugs. Drinking too much alcohol or using drugs increases risky behavior and may put you at risk of sexual assault and possible exposure to STIs.

The steps work best when used together. No single step can protect you from every single type of STI.

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