Everyone, regardless of their sexual activity, should be tested for Sexually Transmitted Diseases or STD. Even individuals who have never engaged in intercourse with another human should be tested because even virgins can become infected with an STD.
The fact that most people believe they would know if they had an STD is a myth. The signs and symptoms are not always that clear. Most adults, teens, and pre-teens need to be tested before entering a relationship, and several more times during their lifetime.
There are simple STD testing procedures which can be performed at your general practitioner. And no one needs to know you are having an STD test or the results. These are kept confidential by your doctor and only shared with those individuals you predetermine you want to know the results.
As a responsible person, getting tested regularly is an obligation you owe to yourself and anyone you have sex with. Here are 7 reasons you need regular STD testing.
- A Virgin Can Still Have An STD
First, it is important to note that virginity means something different to each individual. One could have oral sex without vaginal sex and claim virgin status. The same could be said with anal sex and dry-humping. The definition of virginity is a grey area and is a personal label for every person. However, even a virgin can contract an STD.
There are several sexually transmitted diseases which can be spread from skin-to-skin contact. Other STDs can be spread through casual contact. Many children have oral herpes from their parents and grandparents kissing them on the lips when they were extremely young. A large portion of adults with cold sores has the herpes virus and can pass it along with their partner through oral sex.
- Self-respect and Respect for Your Partner
Unless you have gone to your doctor and requested an STD test, you will not know you have an infection. The same could be said about your partner. If you respect yourself, and you should, whenever you are planning on becoming sexually active with a new partner, get an STD test.
If you know you don’t have any sexually transmitted infections, you can have an open and honest conversation with your partner. And having an honest relationship from the beginning will make things easier throughout your togetherness.
- Commitment Doesn’t Always Equal Monogamy
You may think you don’t need to be tested for STDs because you are married or in a monogamous relationship. You trust your partner and would not want to think they would stray to another bed.
Even if you both have been tested before you got together, it is a good idea to engage in periodic STD testing. The testing is for your safety and wellbeing, as well as your partners. This will protect each of you. And when you are both clear from infections, it will ultimately strengthen your relationship.
- Because Not Worrying is Better Than Not Knowing
Having a diagnosis of an STD is scary, especially if you don’t know where you picked it up from. Not knowing is even scarier. What if you have an STD and pass it on to your partner, but didn’t tell them you were infected, because you didn’t know. Imagine the arguments this information might lead to.
It is best to be proactive and know what is going on with your body before you share it with another human being. You will also want to be on medications to avoid further spreading of infection.
- It’s Never Too Late to Practice Safe Sex
Some individuals may think they don’t need to get tested for STDs because they have already had unprotected sex with this partner. And if they were going to get an STD, they would have already gotten one and it is too late.
It is never too late to practice safe sex. With each new sexual partner, you should practice safe sex, even after you commit to one another. Safe sex is the only way to stop the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.
- Because You Want to Start a Family
Testing for STDs periodically will help when a couple decides to add to their family. Many women are diagnosed with chlamydia after her partner has strayed. This type of STD usually shows up when a woman is having difficulty getting pregnant. A woman could also develop the chlamydia infection if she is sleeping with more than one partner.
- Because No Symptoms Doesn’t Mean No STD
Just because you are not experiencing burning when you urinate, or itching or any other type of signal, doesn’t mean you don’t have an STD.
The same could be said for having certain signs of an STD. Not all genital itching and/or burning is an indication you are infected with an STD.
Getting tested for sexually transmitted diseases is the only sure way to determine if you have an STD. These types of testing are not part of a regular checkup or average blood panel. You will need to request STD testing from your doctor or while visiting a health clinic.
Most sexually active individuals have no idea how common STDs are, and that is why testing is so important. By adding regular STD testing to your sexual health practices, you will be sure to remain infection free. Add STD testing by using protective barriers, like condoms, during all types of sexual contact, and practising monogamy will help keep you and your partner STD free.
It is up to you to talk to your doctor about any concerns you have about your sexual health. It is unfortunate, but many general practitioners do not regularly bring up the subject of sexual health. A woman’s doctor, those who specialize in gynaecological issues, will ask about your sexual health without you prompting them. It is part of a woman’s health exam. Doctors who see mostly men will need to ask more questions about their sexual health in order to keep STDs to a minimum.
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