There are contagious infections and diseases that spread by direct contact with the affected person. Similarly, some injections and diseases can spread through sexual activities. Whether we are sexually active or not, it is important for all of us to know the details to keep us safe. Due to lack of awareness, the number of people affected by the sexually transmitted disease and infections is growing day by day. It is a global phenomenon and there is a need to educate people about this important issue. This article discusses the five most common sexually transmitted diseases. Please continue reading to learn more about it.
What are Sexually Transmitted Diseases?
Before we start knowing the details about the most common sexually transmitted diseases, let’s first see the difference between sexually transmitted diseases and injections. There are different sexually transmitted infections and then there are sexually transmitted diseases. There is a difference between these two and here is how they differ from each other.
There is a lot of confusion between these two terms. Some people use both terms interchangeably because they do not know the actual difference. The term sexually transmitted disease is used to represent a collection of medical injections that are transmitted through sexual contact. These diseases often result from an injection that has no symptoms.
It is also true that not all sexually transmitted infections result in sexually transmitted disease. Mean to say, a majority of women who contract HPV (human papillomavirus) will not develop the resulting disease cervical cancer. In other words, sexually transmitted infections do not always mean sexually transmitted disease.
It is a common sexually transmitted disease that often affects young people. In Canada, the majority of people affected by Chlamydia are aged 15 to 24. As per statistics, the disease is more common in women than in men. The bacteria that causes this illness can affect many parts of the body including but limited to rectum and genitals.
This disease can spread by having oral, anal, or vaginal unprotected sexual contact with an infected person. It can cause a burning sensation during urination, abnormal vaginal discharge, bleeding between periods, during or after sexual intercourse, increased pain during intercourse or periods, or lower abdominal or back pain in women.
The men experience similar symptoms as the women. The men may experience pain, burning, or itching sensation during discharge from the penis or urination. The swelling and pain of the testicles are other common symptoms.
In men, chlamydia leads to itching on the penis, burning sensation or pain during urination, discharge from the penis, pain or swelling of the testicles. Nearly half of the men affected do not experience any symptoms. The only way to avoid this illness is to use condoms and other items that make the sexual relationship protected.
It is another common sexually transmitted disease (STD). The researchers have found a 200% increase in this disease over the past 10 years. As a matter of fact, this STD is caused by a bacteria. Whether male or female, the infected person can spread the bacteria during an unprotected vaginal, anal or oral sexual relation.
If a woman is infected with Gonorrhea bacteria, she can pass on the disease during childbirth. The symptoms of this illness are different in men and women. A woman can experience symptoms such as yellowish vaginal discharge, pain/abnormal vaginal bleeding, and burning sensation during urination if they get infected with this bacteria.
As far as men are concerned, they can experience symptoms such as burning sensation during urination, pain/swelling of the testicles, and discharge from the penis. That being said, a good number of men and women are asymptomatic. It is possible to avoid this STD. The only way to avoid this illness is to use condoms and other items that make the sexual relationship protected.
- Genital Herpes
It is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) and one in five people in Canada are suffering from it. Some research studies have called it the most common STI in North America. It is widespread in the regions where unprotected sexual relationships are prevalent. Due to having unprotected sexual relationships, a large number of people contract it every single day.
There is a need to raise awareness about such kind of problems that can go viral. The herpes simplex (HSV) virus is known to cause genital herpes infection. This virus exists in two forms namely: type 1 (HSV1) & type 2 (HSV2). The HSV2, which is the type 2 of HSV is mostly responsible for causing genital herpes.
Even skin-to-skin contact with the infected body area can spread this virus. The vaginal or oral sexual relationship with an infected person can easily spread the illness. This infection is marked by the outbreak of lesions (painful) generally located in the thighs, buttocks, genital area, and around the anus. The lesions caused by genital herpes appear in the form of blisters.
The appearance of lesions often preceded by symptoms such as itching and tingling. Some people may confuse the symptoms of this disease with acne or pimples. Due to the minor nature of symptoms in many cases, most of the infected people may not actually know that they have genital herpes. That is why it is import to raise awareness about this STI.
- HPV (Human Papilloma Virus)
Human Papilloma Virus, commonly known with the abbreviation HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) in North America. As per research, about 75% of sexually active women and men will have at least one HPV infection during their lifetime. Like other STIs, the skin-to-skin contact with the infected area, oral, anal, or vaginal sexual relationship with the infected person can cause this illness.
It is important to mention that the people who may not have any symptoms of HPV can spread the disease to others through direct skin contact and sexual relationships. Due to this reason, the best way to keep yourself safe is to adopt protected sexual practices. In general, the immune system of the individual naturally overcomes this infection. For some people, the infection wreaks havoc by causing different health concerns. It often leads to small warts (condylomata).
If it causes condylomata (small warts), they appear as minuscule growths shaped like cauliflower or venereal warts that are of skin color. The victim may not experience any pain but the itching is often experienced by the victims. The only way to avoid this illness is to use condoms and other items that make the sexual relationship protected.
- HIV and AIDS
These are the worst disease that could be spread through sexual relationships. Human Immunodeficiency Virus, most commonly known by the abbreviation HIV, is a virus that infects certain cells of the immune system, the defence system of the body. A person having this illness can spread it to other sexual partners. In fact, the disease is transferred when a person gets direct contact with the biological fluids of the person such as sperm, pre-ejaculatory liquid, blood, and vaginal secretions.
The unprotected sexual relations, whether anal, oral, or vaginal, with the infected person, is the main cause of the spread of HIV. Moreover, non-sterilized needles and sharing needles are two other common causes of the transmission. If a woman has this disease, she can transmit to her child through breastfeeding, during pregnancy, or childbirth. A person is termed as HIV seropositive when he or she gets infected with HIV.
The person may feel quite well after contracting with the HIV virus. As the immune system of the body becomes weak, the virus overcomes the immune system and stops the body to fight off infections. At this stage, the victim starts experiencing a variety of symptoms. It is the time when the discussion for Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome, or commonly known as AIDA, starts. The HIV turns to AIDS in 10 years on the average. The only way to avoid this illness is to use condoms and other items that make the sexual relationship protected.
Tips to Reduce Risk of Contracting STI
All of us should be careful and we should make sure we and our partner are free of any infection. These diseases can be lethal if we do not take proper care. Here are some tips to reduce the risk of contracting sexually transmitted disease:
- It is good to limit the number of sexual partners.
- Do not forget to use condoms during sexual relations.
- It is good to avoid having a sexual relationship with a person who appears to have an injection that can spread through sexual activity.
- To prevent infection transmission from a woman to man, using a dental dam or anything else to avoid direct contact with the partner is good.
- It is good to have a sexually transmitted infection blood test of the person you want to have a sexual relationship with. If there is an infection, it must be treated to avoid becoming a disease.