STD’s Surge Across the US: It’s time to Talk.Test.Treat.
Three common STDs have increased sharply across the United States for the fourth year in a row. To help reverse this trend, the IDSA Foundation is calling on individuals and healthcare providers to take these three actions to protect themselves, their partners, and their patients from STDs: Talk, Test, and Treat.
“Across the nation, these data mean our work is more important than ever – and we can all get involved,” says Gail Bolan, MD, Director of CDC’s Division of STD Prevention. “CDC and other federal organizations, community leaders, health departments, community-based organizations, health care providers, and individuals can all take action at work, in our schools and communities, and at home to make a difference.”
Untreated STDs Can Have Serious Effects
Chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis are curable with the right medicines, yet most cases go undiagnosed and untreated – which can lead to severe health problems that include infertility (inability to become pregnant), ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the womb), stillbirth in infants, and increased HIV risk.
The good news? All STDs can be prevented and treated, and most can be cured. Here’s how individuals and healthcare providers can add the Talk.Test.Treat. strategy into their health routine:
- Talk openly with partner(s)External and healthcare providersExternal about sex and STDs.
- Get tested. Because many STDs have no symptoms, getting tested is the only way to know for sure if you have an infection.
- If you test positive for an STD, work with your doctor to get the correct treatment. Some STDs can be cured with the right medication. Those that aren’t curable can be treated.
Healthcare providers can…
- Providing the best care possible means talking with patientsCdc-pdfExternal about sexual health and safe sex practices.
- Test patients as recommended by CDC.
- Follow CDC’s STD Treatment Guidelines to make sure patients get successful treatment and care. CDC offers a free app for AppleExternal and Android devicesExternal, so that you can access the guidelines from wherever you are.
April is STD Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness about what STDs are, but it’s also a time to take action to protect your own health, or the health of those around you – whether they be a partner, a loved one, or a patient. Visit the official website for more information on how you can talk, test, and treat.