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Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Important Reasons to Be Tested for STDs

Testing for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is easy these days; you can even do some tests at home. Safer STD testing makes it easy to find economical testing services at local clinics. You don’t even need an appointment, as there are drop-in clinics and sexual health centers in most major towns and cities.

There are many STDs. Some are relatively minor but others can have far-reaching implications for your long-term health, which is why testing is so important. Here are the most common scenarios when testing for STDs is sensible.

You Have Symptoms


The majority of people end up making an appointment to see a doctor or sexual health worker because they have symptoms. Unusual lumps and bumps or unexplained symptoms on the genital area can cause many sleepless nights. Often, there is a simple reason for the symptoms, such as an ingrowing hair or urinary infection, but it is better to be safer than sorry.

Unwanted Sexual Encounter

Sadly, unwanted sexual encounters are common. If you drink alcohol to the point of unconsciousness, you are putting yourself at risk. Young women and men are also vulnerable to date rape drugs. If you are the victim of a sexual assault, it’s not your fault, even if you were drunk. It’s important to be tested for STDs after an unwanted sexual encounter, as you won’t know if the perpetrator was infected with a sexually transmitted disease.

Ill-advised Sexual Encounters

Most people have a few one-night stands in their misspent youth. Beer goggles have a lot to answer for and most people seem very charming after ten drinks. However, you have to remember that casual sexual encounters are a risky business. You should always use a condom, but even that won’t protect you from every STD out there. Not many people ask a one night stand for a certificate of sexual health, so if you have symptoms or you play the field without using protection, make an appointment for a sexual health check-up.

High-Risk Sex

Sex workers, drug users, or men who have sex with other men are in a high-risk category. Regular sexual health testing is essential if you want to remain disease free.

A New Relationship

It is better to use protection in the early days of a new relationship, but once you are certain this person is “the one”, get tested for STDs, and if you both have the all-clear, you can switch to other forms of birth control (if appropriate).

Pre-Conception

Some sexually transmitted diseases can make conception difficult (Chlamydia) and harm the unborn fetus. If you are planning to have a baby and you have taken a few risks in the past, ask your doctor to test for sexually transmitted diseases before you start trying for a baby.

Testing for an STD involves a physical examination, skin swabs, and blood tests. You don’t need to be embarrassed about asking for an STD test, as the doctors and nurses who work at these clinics have seen it all before.

This is a guest blog entry.

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