One of the scariest facts that sexually active people must face is the danger of sexually transmitted disease. While utilizing protection in the form of condoms can help to reduce the risk of STD transmission, only abstaining from all sexual contact will keep you 100% safe. This is why sexually active people are urged to get regular testing at National STD testing centers to get accurate results, as well as get access to support resources. In addition to protecting yourself during sexual activities, being aware of which STDs are most prevalent can be of great help. If you know what to look for, you will have a better chance of evading STD infection.

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1. Herpes Simplex

Herpes can be a bit tricky. While genital herpes is technically categorized as an STD, infection doesn’t always come about as a result of sexual contact. Some forms of herpes can be spread via non-sexual contact, making it difficult for patients to determine exactly when, how or where they were first exposed to the virus. There are at least eight known variations of herpes simplex, making it one of the most commonly occurring STDs in the world. The symptoms of herpes simplex generally consist of cold sores, blisters, redness and irritation.

2. Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

This STD has become widely known as a result of rising cervical and penile cancer rates. The good news is that HPV has a vaccine, and in many cases, it is treatable. Some cases of HPV clear up after a period of time on their own, but many patients with this STD aren’t even aware that they are infected. HPV can only be transmitted through sexual contact, and is very prevalent in younger adults who may not have proper knowledge of the disease, its signs or risks. If you suspect that you have been exposed to HPV, a test can be performed so that a suitable course of treatment can be started.

3. Syphilis

Doctors have been treating this commonly occurring STD for hundreds of years. Syphilis stems from an infectious strain of bacteria that is spread through sexual contact, and progresses in four distinct stages. At first, you may not know that you have been infected with syphilis because the symptoms can be quite innocuous, initially. A small bump or sore in the genital region is the very first sign of this STD. It can take many years for the symptoms of syphilis to manifest, which is why regular STD screening is suggested for all sexually active persons.

4. Gonorrhea

Some sexually active people realize that they have gonorrhea soon after infection. The symptoms of this STD can include a heavy, unpleasant vaginal discharge for women, while men may experience severe pain while urinating. Other cases of gonorrhea are remarkable because patients showed no sign of symptoms prior to STD testing. The World Health Organization has recently revealed that gonorrhea infection is becoming more difficult to treat due to mutations in the disease. The best way to combat gonorrhea is with regular STD testing as well as responsible condom use.

The number of sexual partners you have has little bearing on your risk to STD exposure. Some people become infected after a single encounter, or after embarking on their first intimate relationships. While having an open and honest dialogue with potential sexual partners can be beneficial, going for STD screening together should help to put all of your trepidations to rest.

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