April is known for many things: the coming of spring, Oral Cancer Awareness Month, and STD Awareness Month. Here at Self Collect, we’re all about educating you on how sexually transmitted diseases affect you, what they are, how to prevent them, how to test them, and how to treat them. Today, it’s all about raising awareness for STDs and the importance of getting yourself tested.
As the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) STD Surveillance Report shows, STD rates increased for the fifth consecutive year in the United States.
The study found the following:
Nearly 2.5 million combined cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis.
1.76M cases of chlamydia — an increase of 2.9% since 2017
583,405 cases of gonorrhea — an increase of 5% since 2017
115,045 cases of syphilis — an increase of 13.3% since 2017
Primary and secondary syphilis increase 14.4%
Cases of congenital syphilis – syphilis passed from a mother to her baby during pregnancy– increased 40 percent from 2017-2018
Congenital syphilis can result in miscarriage, stillbirth, newborn death, and severe lifelong physical and neurological problems
Worldwide, there are 376 million new infections per year for chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and trichomoniasis, with more than 1 million STDs diagnosed every day in 2016.
Chlamydia and Gonorrhea
Gonorrhea, urinary tract infections, and chlamydia have extremely similar symptoms, so it is impossible to tell which one you have without testing.
Chlamydia is one of the more common sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Nearly 2 million Americans have it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
It is typically asymptomatic, meaning very few people will experience symptoms. If you do, you may have abnormal vaginal discharge, bleeding between periods, a burning sensation or pain when urinating, abdominal or pelvic pain, or pain during intercourse. If left untreated, chlamydia can cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, chronic pain, and infertility.
Gonorrhea is fairly widespread — there are an estimated 820,000 new cases every year in the United States. Symptoms include abnormal vaginal discharge, bleeding between periods, and a burning sensation or pain when urinating.
Both are treatable with antibiotics.
Syphilis is a bacterial infection that starts as a painless sore and is usually spread by sexual contact. There are numerous stages of this disease that, if allowed to progress, can damage your brain and nervous system. Without treatment, it can be fatal.
The first stage, known as primary syphilis and secondary syphilis, is where a chancre and a rash develop on your body. Both will heal on their own. The third stage, latent syphilis, has no symptoms and can be in your body for years. If not treated, the final stages, tertiary and neurosyphilis, can damage your brain, nerves, eyes, heart, blood vessels, liver, bones, joints, nervous system, and eyes. It can be fatal.
Trichomoniasis, or Trich, is fairly common, mild, and treatable. The parasite increases your chance of catching other STDs, primarily HIV, and can lead to preterm births and low birth weights, if you’re pregnant.
It is extremely contagious and asymptomatic. To protect your partner, you should refrain from having sex until 7-10 days after your treatment.
What Can You Do To Protect Yourself?
When it comes to STDs, prevention is key to protecting yourself and your partner. The first thing you should do, before engaging in safe sex, is to get yourself and your partner tested. We know going to a doctor’s office can be a hassle, so we took the waiting room, the phone call, and the embarrassing appointment out of the equation with our at-home testing kits.
At Self Collect, we are a team of respected healthcare professionals who created a secure service that empowers you to take control of your intimate health, on your terms.
Our CLIA certified, partner laboratory has decades of experience in DNA testing that it provides to doctors, clinics, and hospitals. The laboratory’s use of FDA approved collection devices and testing methods allowed us to bring you the same testing service you receive at your doctor’s office.
All of our tests are discreetly sent through the mail, come with prepaid packaging, and are DNA swabs tests. You will not need to send us blood samples.
Your results will be processed within 5 business days, on average (some tests may take longer to process due to demand), and your results will be accessible online. We will not send your results to your email!
At Self Collect, we believe in you taking control of your intimate health. Testing through us is convenient, easy, and judgement-free; you do it all in the comfort of your home. For more information on what tests we offer and how our process works, visit us online.