Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)—also known as sexually transmitted infections (STIs)—are most commonly caused by sexual contact, especially unprotected sex. While they don’t always cause symptoms, STDs can present with genital sores or bumps, a burning sensation while urinating, unusual vaginal or penile discharge, painful sex, abdominal discomfort, fever, and rash.
STDs can be caused by:
- Bacteria – Gonorrhea, syphilis, and chlamydia are the most common bacterial STDs.
- A virus – Human papillomavirus (HPV) genital herpes, hepatitis, and HIV are viral STDs.
- Parasites – Trichomoniasis is one of the most common STDs and is caused by a protozoan parasite.
STDs are treated on an individualized basis, depending on the type of infection you have.
Most bacterial STDs can be fully treated and cured with antibiotics. These antibiotics may be in the form of a single injection, pills taken over several days, or a cream applied to the affected area. Many parasitic STDs, including trichomoniasis, can be treated with antibiotics, too. It’s important to refrain from all sexual activity until seven days after you’ve completed the antibiotic regimen.
While not all viral STDs can be cured, antiviral drugs can help manage the condition. The type of antiviral medication you’re prescribed depends on the STD you were diagnosed with. Take the prescription as directed and pay attention to any special instructions, such as drinking lots of water or taking a vitamin D supplement.
You may be wondering what could happen if you leave an STD untreated. After all, if it’s not causing any uncomfortable symptoms, do you really need a regimen of antibiotics? The answer is, emphatically, yes. Think about it: An STD is, effectively, an infection that affects the genitals, but it can also spread to other areas of the body. For example, untreated gonorrhea can damage the joints while untreated chlamydia can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease in women and infertility in both women and men. Untreated HPV can result in oral cancer or penile cancer (in men).
Another reason to treat an STD as promptly as possible? To reduce or eliminate your risk of passing along an infection to any future sexual partners, a benefit that can’t be overstated.
STD Treatment at PhysicianOne Urgent Care
PhysicianOne Urgent Care offers STD testing and treatment at all of our urgent care centers. We’re open seven days per week for extended hours, so you can see us at a time that works for your schedule. What’s more, all of our clinics are equipped with on-site labs, so we’ll be able to diagnose your STD quickly. You’ll be seen by one of our experienced practitioners who will take the time to learn about your symptoms and perform a physical exam (a pelvic exam may also be required of female patients) before ordering the necessary testing. Then, based on the results of your test, your practitioner will create an individualized treatment plan.
You don’t have to make an appointment for STD testing and treatment with PhysicianOne Urgent Care. Simply find your nearest facility—we’re located in New York, Massachusetts, and Connecticut—and walk right in to receive prompt care. You can also check in online to expedite your visit.