How to Prevent Sexually Transmitted Infections and Stay Protected
Sexually transmitted infections or STIs are the infections that spread due to sexual contact with your partner. These infections may cause damage to your body and even lead to death. STIs are common contagious infections. Though there are some STIs that can be treated, and cured, others cannot.
How STIs Can Be Transmitted
A person who has a sexually transmitted infection may pass it to others through skin contact, genitals, rectum, body fluids or mouth. Anyone who has anal, oral or vaginal sex with another person may get an STI. Though STIs do not show any symptoms, your health condition can be affected.
Causes of STIs
Sexually transmitted infections can be caused due to viral or bacterial infections. STIs that are caused by bacteria can be treated by taking antibiotics. However, STIs that occur due to the attack of viruses cannot be cured though its symptoms can be treated. Visit a sexual health clinic for same day STD testing in London and get treated immediately.
Risk Factors for STIs
- Having sex with more than one partner.
- Sex with someone who has a sexually transmitted infection.
- Past history of STIs.
- Use of intravenous drugs or partners using intravenous drugs.
Common STIs are the Following:
- Chlamydia symptoms
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.
- Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection.
- Genital herpes.
- Hepatitis B.
How to Lessen the Risk of Getting an STI
- Limit the number of sex partners – Knowing the sexual history of your partner is as important as that of your own. Thus, the more partners you or your partners have had sex with, the higher the chances of getting an STI.
- Use a latex condom – Every time you enjoy anal, oral or vaginal sex with your partner, it is important to use latex condom in order to reduce the risk of getting infected with an STI. The condoms that are lubricated with spermicides will not provide extra protection and using some spermicides can often increase the chances of getting HIV.
- Avoid unsafe sex – Some sexual acts can tear your skin and increase your risk of getting STIs. The small cuts that do not bleed properly will allow bacteria and viruses to pass back and forth. Anal sex poses greater risks as the tissues in the rectum can tear easily. Body fluids also have STIs and having unprotected sexual contact with an infected person will increase your chances of contracting an STI.
- Get immunized – The vaccinations available can prevent hepatitis B and some kinds of HPV.
How STIs can Affect Pregnancy
If you have a sexually transmitted infection at the time of pregnancy, then this may harm the fetus. Chlamydia and gonorrhea symptoms may lead to various health problems in the infant ranging from pneumonia to eye infections. Syphilis may even cause stillbirth or miscarriage. HIV infection may pass to the baby during vaginal birth.
If you or your partner has had an STI, it is advised to visit your nearest GUM Clinic in London as your fetus might be at risk of getting an STI during pregnancy. The tests for STIs can be provided in a routine way during prenatal care. Make sure you get treated for the STIs early to reduce the chances of your fetus getting the infection. Thus, you as well as your partner may need to be treated on time.