The Lowdown on STD’s

Sexually active people of all ages and ethnicities worldwide are at risk for contracting sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). STDs are infections caused through intimate contact between heterosexual and homosexual partners, which can then spread to other sex partners of infected individuals. Some STDs can cause infertility, HIV/AIDS, and even death through complications from HIV/AIDS.
STDs can cause serious physical, psychological, and emotional consequences in affected individuals. The statistics are alarming, with 20 million new cases of STDs being reported each year. Over 50% of these new cases occur among teens and young adults. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the cost of treating STDs contracted in just one year is $16 billion.

Causes of STDs

STDs are caused by viruses and bacteria which are spread through sexual intercourse, or by direct skin contact with infected areas. The viruses and bacteria responsible for causing STDs can enter the body through small cuts or tears in the mouth, anus, and genitals. STDs can be contracted from both oral sex and sexual intercourse. Some examples of sexually transmitted infections include:

  • Chlamydia
  • Genital Warts (human papillomavirus)
  • Gonorrhea
  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Herpes
  • HIV and AIDS
  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
  • Syphilis

People who are sexually active at a young age, have multiple sex partners, and/or have casual and unprotected sex are all at a higher risk of getting STDs. The use of alcohol or drugs can put a person at higher risk of infection due to impaired judgment. Also, a lack of awareness, education, and knowledge about STDs increases the risk of an individual contracting a sexually transmitted infection.

Prevention is Key

While abstaining from sex and sexual contact is the only way to entirely prevent infection with an STD, there are additional measures one can take to significantly reduce the risk of developing these infections. Education by physicians, teachers, and parents is essential for prevention. STDs can also be prevented by:

  • Regular visits to the doctor before and after becoming sexually active for education on STDs
  • Getting vaccinated for hepatitis A, hepatitis B and HPV (human papillomavirus)
  • Condom use
  • Limiting drug and alcohol intake

Getting Treatment

Many STDs don’t cause any symptoms. If you have had unprotected sex, talk to your doctor about getting tested for STDs. Symptoms that may indicate a sexually transmitted infection include the following:

  • Painful urination or sex
  • Discharge from the vagina,      penis, anus, or throat.
  • Lesions or a rash on the skin
  • Jaundice

If you are diagnosed with an STD, any sex partner(s) will need to be notified. The partner(s) will need to be tested for STDs. The testing and treatment of partners limits the spread of STDs to other individuals.
Early evaluation and treatment is essential. Some STDs are entirely curable, others become chronic conditions requiring ongoing monitoring and management.
If you feel uncomfortable seeing your primary care doctor for evaluation or treatment of STDs, there are multiple local clinics that offer confidential examinations and testing. The National STD Hotline at 1-800-227-8922 is staffed with trained professionals who confidentially answer questions and provide information and guidance. Remember, STD prevention is everyone’s responsibility.
To learn more visit:

Health News + Events

What to Expect With COVID-19 & Back-to-School Protocols

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States in early 2020, it turned life upside down for more than 50 million school-age children across the country. In fact, according to Ed  Read More

TikTok Health Hacks: Safe or Sham?

No matter your preferred social media channel, you’ve likely seen viral health hacks for everything from congestion to snoring to weight loss. We turned to our team of certified  Read More

How to Treat a Dog Bite

Dogs are undoubtedly man’s best friend, but even the friendliest of creatures can sometimes get spooked or display aggressive behavior. Bites can even happen when giving an excit  Read More

What Our Patients Are Saying

Rating 4.6
Rating 4.2
Rating 4.6
Rating 5.0

"The overall care I received was excellent! I also appreciate your affiliation with Yale New Haven Hospital."

Derby, CT

"Throughout the visit I felt like the staff really cared. The Doctor took his time talking with me about my symptoms, and I felt like he listened to all my concerns and took that into consideration when recommending the right treatment. Thank you!"

Hamden, CT

"I had to take my son in for an ear infection following a sudden change in temperament at daycare. He was inconsolable the entire car ride but when we got there and by the time we left this care facility he was back to his normal happy go lucky little two year old boy. I highly recommend PhysicianOne Urgent Care."

Westwood, MA

"I wanted to take a moment to thank you for the attention you gave me last week. My son was started on antibiotics and ear drops. Within 24 hours he began to feel better. The poor kid had been going to school in tears because he was afraid of missing any more days, but feeling (and looking) just awful! He's not been able to even think about lacrosse practice, but thanks to starting him on antibiotics, he was thrilled to return to practice today."

Somers, NY