Sexual Health

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 When you are sexually active, pregnancy is usually the greatest concern.  While pregnancy is something to be very concerned about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are equally, if not more worrisome.  You are at risk for pregnancy if you have sex around ovulation (about 3 days a month), but, 

you are at risk for getting a sexually transmitted infection every time you have sex.  

If you become pregnant, while it may be a traumatic experience, with help, you will be able to work through it.  However some STIs can lead to death.

The decision to have sex is a very important one and there are lots of things to think about.  Sexual relationships affect your physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being.  There are risks for pregnancy and STIs even when using birth control or condoms.

Announce coming events

- STIs are the most common infections in America next to the common cold and flu


-One in five Americans are infected with a STI


-15 million new cases are reported each year


-More than 65 million Americans are infected with an incurable STI


-There are 35 – 50 different kinds of STIs


-20 different STIs are rampant among youth


-63% of all STIs occur in persons less than 25 years of age


-STIs infect 3.7 million teenagers each year


-80% infected with a STI do not develop the initial sypmtoms and so do not know that they are infected


-STIs are contagious even though so symptoms exist


-New strains of STIs are resistant to treatment


-STIs can often cause chronic pain and permanent damage


-While most STIs are treatable and/or curable, some STIs are incurable and can eventually kill

"When you have sex with someone, you are having sex with everyone they have had sex with for the last ten years, and everyone they and their partners have had sex with for the last ten years."

~ C. Everett Koop, M.D., Former US Surgeon General

The most common sexually transmitted diseases

Chlamydia

SYMPTOMS:

Men- Usually none. Some experience discharge from the penis and burning with urination.

Women- Called the "silent disease". Usually no symptoms. Some experience pain and/or vaginal discharge


DAMAGE:

Men- Sterility

Women- Considered to be the most common cause of sterility. Advanced stage may require removal of uterus, tubes, and ovaries. Can cause PID (below)


STATS:

Estimated nearly 2.8 million new cases annualy.

75% are unaware of infection

By age 30, 50% of sexually active women have had chlamydia.

Gonorrhea

SYMPTOMS:  

Men- Pus from urethra. Burning upon urination.

Women- If symptoms occur at all, they include pelvic pain, painful urination and pus-like discharge.


DAMAGE: 

Men- Sterility. Scarring of the urethra and urinary tract problems.

Women- Sterility. Surgery in severe cases. Common cause of PID (see below)

Both- Can increase risk of HIV infection two to five times.


STATS:

Estimated 700,000 new cases annually

80% are not aware that they are infected in the early stages

Syphilis

SYMPTOMS:

Men- 1st Stage: Swollen, non-painful ulcers on external genitalia.

              2nd Stage: changes of skin, fever, enlarged lymph nodes

Women- 1st Stage: often unnoticed

                     2nd Stage: changes of skin, fever, enlarged lymph nodes


DAMAGE:

Men- Brain disorders, heart disease, blindness, dementia and death

Women- Brain disorders, heart disease, blindness, dementia and death. Can cause birth defects or death in newborns if mother is infected.

Both- Can increase risk of HIV infection


STATS:

36,000 new cases reported annually in the US

50%  of infected people are not aware that they have this disease

HIV/AIDS

SYMPTOMS:

Men- Fever, sore throat, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes. Must be tested, as symptoms mimic many other diseases

Women-  Fever, sore throat, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes. Must be tested, as symptoms mimic many other diseases


DAMAGE:

Men- Immune System breakdown, death

Women- Immune System breakdown, death


STATS:

About 1,018.428 cases in the US to date, 526.793 deaths

Worldwide 25,000,000 have died and 33,400,000 are living with HIV or AIDS

Genital Herpes

SYMPTOMS:

Men- Lesions appear at the site of infection, periodic eruptions of painful blisters and ulcers anywhere on the body

Women- Lesions appear at the site of infection, periodic eruptions of painful blisters and ulcers anywhere on the body


DAMAGE:

Men- Continuous outbreaks. Eventually may lead to hospitalization. Lifetime medication required

Women- Continuous outbreaks. Eventually may lead to hospitalization. Lifetime medication required. Causes infant death


STATS: 

45 million infected

1 million new cases annually

75% show no symptoms

25% of women and 20% of men have this disease

HPV (Human Papilloma Virus)

SYMPTOMS:

Men- Wart-like growths

Women- Often no visible symptoms. Some experience vulvar burning, itching and pain. Abnormal pap smears


DAMAGE:

Men- Cancer of the penis and anus

Women- Initially premalignant changes difficult to eradicate. Develops into cervical cancer if not treated.


STATS:

20 million people are thought to be carriers

100 different strains exist today. 62 million cases per year

75% of reproductive population are infected

Trichomoniasis

SYMPTOMS:

Men- Most men have no symptoms. May have irritation, discharge, burning with urination

Women- Frothy, yellow-green vaginal discharge with a strong odor.


DAMAGE:

Men- Bladder and prostate damage

Women- Genital inflammation can increase a woman's susceptibility to HIV infection if she is exposed to the virus. May increase the chance that an HIV-infected woman passes HIV to her sexual partner(s)


STATS:

Estimated 7.4 million new cases annually.

Most common curable STD in young, sexually active women.


PID (Pelvic Inflammatory Disease)

SYMPTOMS:

Men- This disease only affects women

Women-   Usually no symptoms.  If symptoms occur at all, they include pelvic pain, painful urination and pus-like discharge.


DAMAGE:

Men- This disease only affects women

Women- Ectopic Pregnancy (the embryo implants in the fallopian tubes instead of the uterus), can be life-threatening. Sterility and cancer are common. Permanent damage to the reproductive organs.


STATS:

1 million acute episodes annually, most among 15-19 year-olds

100,000 women become infertile as a result of PID each year and 150 will die


Source: Heritage House

It's Your Choice

You are the person who decides whether to expose yourself to STDs. The number of infected people is constantly increasing, and most of these people do not even know that they are carriers of disease.


An estimated 65,000,000 people in the United States currently have an incurable STD. 


Some of the STDs can be treated with antibiotics, others cannot and will remain with you for the rest of your life.