People usually contract sexually transmitted infections (STIs)through different types of sexual contact.Though the different types of STI were commonly transmitted through penis and vagina sex, people now also contract STIs through anal sex, oral sex, and rarely, open-mouth kissing.

STIsare prevalent conditions. According to the Centre for DiseaseControl and Prevention(CDC), there were about 2 million cases of STI or more in 2018.

Sexually active adults need to get tested regularly for STIsto reduce their risk of transmission as much as possible.  Also, when people know more about STIs,they will prepare themselves better to prevent their spread.

What are the commonest STDs?

Being sexually active increases aperson’s risk of contracting this type of infection. So, a person's gender, age, or ethnicity does not affect a person's risk of contracting an STI.

The following are the most typical STIs;

  • Gonorrhoea
  • HumanPapillomavirus(HPV)
  • Chlamydia
  • Syphilis
  • Hepatitis B
  • HIV
  • Herpes
  • PelvicInflammatoryDisease(PID)
  • Molluscumcontagiosum
  • Scabies
  • Crabs or pubic lice
  • Trichomoniasis

How are these STDs transmitted?

STIs are commonly transmitted through the following;

  • Direct contact with an infected sore or lesion
  • In the case of pubic lice,close personal contact
  • Being exposed to an infectious blood
  • Sharing of needles
  • Coming in contact with the semen or vaginal fluid of an infected person

STIs are divided into three categories, and they include;

  • Viral
  • Bacterial
  • Parasitic

The bacteria and viruses of STI are usually contained in different body fluids like saliva, blood, semen, and vaginal secretion. Sometimes, a person may contract an STI through direct contact with a fluid that contains the bacteria or virus. You can avoid contact with this fluid during vaginal sex, anal sex, or oral sex using condoms or dental dams.

STIs like herpes can be transmitted through skin-to-skin contact such as anal, vaginal, or oral sex. Also,they can be transferred from the genitals to the mouth during oral sex.

Hepatitis and HIV are easily transmitted via contact with infected blood when partners have open sores or share needles.

Parasitic STIs, like pubic lice, are usually contracted through close personal contact with an infected person by transfering the lice from their hairs to yours. Pubic lice can also be transmitted through contactswith bedsheets or clothing that were exposed to the pubic hairs of the infected person.

Risk factors and prevention of STDs

Several risk factors increase a person's risk of contracting STIs, and you need to avoid them.

To prevent STI, you should:

  • Use dental dams or condoms:Using these rightly can reduce your risk of coming in direct contact with the fluid or lesion that carries the agent of infection.
  • Use water-based lubricants: Using an oil-based lubricant breaks condoms
  • Be tested for STIs: You need to be tested for STIs regularly, especially before getting sexually involved with a new partner.
  • Be vaccinated: It is good to take vaccines that protect against conditions like HPV and Hepatitis.
  • Avoiding the use of drugs or alcohol: Taking alcohol or drugs increases one's risk of getting involved in risky healthbehaviours.
  • Avoid or take extra precautions when having sex with a person thatinjects drugs: Those that inject drugs have a higher risk of STIs like HIV and hepatitis, and having sex with them increases your chance, too.

You should know that your risk of contracting an STI increases with the number of your sexual partners. A person that only has sex with one sexually exclusive partner is at a lower risk of contracting these STIs.

You need to know about a person's sexual history before getting involved with any kind of sexual activity with them. You should also ask your new partner to get tested beforebeing sexually involved with them.

Testing

You should undergo an STI testing if you have:

  • A symptom of STI
  • A new sexual partner
  • Sex with more than one person

Know that there is no completely accurate STI test. Also, not all STIscan be tested, and people with these infections barely have symptoms until after a long time. So if you think that you have been exposed to an STI, take a test. If your results are not positive, you will need to retest soon.

For STIs, doctors use the following test samples:

  • Urine
  • Blood
  • Other body fluids

Treatment of STDs

The treatment of an STI depends on the type.Also, the treatments may cure the infection, relieve symptoms, or prevent future flare-ups. You need to know that a partner can still transmit an STI to you even when undergoing treatments and vice versa.

The following are the commonest types of treatment for STIs:

  • Antibiotics: These are used for bacterialSTIslike gonorrhoea, Chlamydia etc.
  • Antivirals: These are used for viral STIs like HIV. They do not cure these diseases but can prevent future outbreaks.
  • Creams and lotions:These are used to treat pubic lice and relieve symptoms of sores.

Most of these medications are prescription-based, so you need to contact your doctor if you think you have an STI. The doctor will tell you about how to prevent transmission and guide you throughout the treatment.

Possible complications

When a person has STI but doesn't receive adequate treatment, it may progress to;

  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
  • Pelvic pain
  • Pregnancy complications
  • Heart disease
  • Inflammation of the eye
  • Arthritis
  • Infertility
  • Some types of cancer

To prevent these complications, you need to undergo proper testing and receive the right treatment.

Conclusion

The most typical ways STIs are transmitted include skin-to-skin contact, bodily fluids, and sometimes through sharing clothes or bed sheets that have been exposed to genitals.

When sexually active, you need to undergo regular testing for STIs. STIs can be adequately treated, and their transmissions can be limited when detected early. Also, you will be free from dangerous or deadly complications.

You can walk in or visit our clinic https://www.sticlinic.london for your STD testing in London. Book an appointment with us here.