How can I know that I have a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STD or STI)?

Anyone who has had a sexual contact with an untrusted partner has the possibility to acquire a Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) or a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI).

If you have not engaged in an unprotected sexual activity with such a person, you don’t have to worry about STIs. Of course, there are other ways of transmitting STIs, but they are very rare.

Anyone can get STIs. No matter you are male or female, in what age group you are or your ethnicity, your economical level, which region in the world you are living, those factors have no effect on spreading STIs. So, the only thing needed, is to have unprotected sexual intercourse with an infected person. Normally around 20 million new STIs are diagnosed every year inside the USA.

So, how can you know that you have got a STI?

After an unprotected sexual activity or blood transfusion or any other risky procedure such as tattooing, if you get below symptoms, please be aware that a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) may be a possibility. Also keep in mind that many STIs may NOT show out symptoms at the early stage of the disease. So, if your test results are negative, it is better to get yourself tested again after some time if you still have the suspicion about a STI.

Symptoms may vary depending on the STI. But in common, we can list those major symptoms as follows,

  • Sores or blisters, in or around genital areas or mouth
  • Pain or burning sensation while passing urine
  • Unusual discharge from the vagina or penis
  • Itching, irritation or swelling inside sex organs or in genital areas
  • Pain in or around abdomen, pelvic areas, vagina or penis
  • Bleeding other than your normal Menstrual periods
  • Pain during or after sexual intercourse
  • Sometimes all these symptoms may present with fever or chills

If you have any of these symptoms, you may have been infected with a Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD or STI). But they might not mean anything serious – but you’d better talk to your health care provider to get it confirmed.

Remember, that most STIs can be treated successfully. The earlier you get the treatment, the better the results you achieve. So, don’t wait until the problem becomes serious.

Whenever possible, the treatment is given as a single dose, but sometimes, you may need to take medications over a period of time.

Are tests for STIs always accurate?

No test for STIs or any other disease is 100% accurate. Some STIs don’t show up right away and some STIs don’t have tests even. So, there’s a high chance for them to be missed in such a case.

Sometimes, those tests can NOT diagnose even if you are having the infection especially during the Incubation Period. It may take some time from few days to even few years, for some tests to become positive for the concerned disease.


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