A Guide to Sexually Transmitted Diseases
What are STD’s? STD stands for “Sexually Transmitted Disease.” This means that an individual can get a disease from having sex or sexual contact with another person who has the STD. There are dangers, but these can be prevented. You can also get tested if you are uncertain if you have an STD. This is important as well because symptoms don’t always show up. Furthermore, not all STD’s can be cured. AIDS/HIV and herpes have treatment, but they do not have a cure.
Some important STD’s to know about are:
- Hepatitis B
- HPV/Genital Warts
Chlamydia: One will see symptoms 7-28 days after having sex. Some people may show no symptoms.
- Extra bleeding between periods
- Additional vaginal discharge
- Abdominal pain along with fever or nausea
- A burning sensation or pain when urinating or having to urinate more frequently
Gonorrhea: People see symptoms of gonorrhea 2-21 days after sexual contact.
- Yellow or gray vaginal discharge
- A burning sensation or pain when urinating or having a bowel movement
- Irregular periods and extra bleeding between periods
- Lower abdominal pain and cramps.
Hepatitis B: An individual will display symptoms 1-9 months after coming in contact with the disease. Some people may show no symptoms or display mild symptoms.
- Yellow skin, fatigue, bowel movements that are light-colored
- Dark-colored urine
- You feel like you have the flu
Herpes: An individual will display symptoms 1-30 days or even longer after engaging in sex. Most people have no symptoms.
- Small blisters that are on the mouth and genitals. The blisters go away after 1-3 weeks. Even if the blisters go away, the individual still has herpes.
- You feel like you have the flu.
HIV/AIDS: The symptoms are displayed in an individual after a couple of months to a couple of years after being in contact HIV. HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.
- Weight loss
- Permanent yeast infections
- Permanent flu-like feelings
- White spots that are found in the mouth
HPV/Genital Warts: A person can display symptoms weeks, months, or years after coming in contact with HPV. Many people do not show these symptoms.
- Some people will develop small, bumpy warts on their genitals
- Itching or burning sensations near the genitals
- Even if the warts go away, the virus can still remain
- Some women have developed cervical cancer
Syphilis: There are usually 2 stages. The symptoms are displayed in a person 1-12 weeks after engaging in sex in the first stage.
The symptoms in the first stage are:
- Having a painless sore or sores on the mouth or genitals
- The sore lasts for 2-6 weeks, but the individual will still have the STD
In the second stage, the symptoms are displayed in a person after the sore heals.
The symptoms of the second stage are:
- Flu-like feelings
- A rash that can be found anywhere on the body
- Even if these symptoms go away, the individual still has syphilis
Trichomoniasis: A person will display the symptoms 5-28 days after engaging in sex. Many people do not show these symptoms.
- Vaginal discharge that is green, yellow, or gray
- Irritation or a burning, itching sensation in the vagina.
- What can happen if it’s not treated: The symptoms will remain.
If you think you may have an STD, more information can be found by clicking on the links below:
Some local centers include: Any Lab Test Now, Thrive Alabama, Quick Care Family Medicine, and Five Horizons Health Services
Link to a map of the centers: https://www.google.com/search?rlz=1C1CHBF_enUS772US772&q=std+testing+in+alabama&npsic=0&rflfq=1&rlha=0&rllag=34139856,-87132240,88736&tbm=lcl&ved=0ahUKEwjz6tiTkZraAhXF61MKHUh9D5EQjGoIkQE&tbs=lrf:!2m1!1e2!2m1!1e3!3sIAE,lf:1,lf_ui:2&rldoc=1#rlfi=hd:;si:;mv:!1m3!1d2274017.1494832034!2d-86.78941185!3d32.704418999999994!2m3!1f0!2f0!3f0!3m2!1i142!2i254!4f13.1;tbs:lrf:!2m1!1e2!2m1!1e3!3sIAE,lf:1,lf_ui:2
Source: The information was obtained from an ETR brochure. ETR is a non-profit group that come up with solutions for health and education based problems. This is ETR’s website: http://www.etr.org/