With how common STDs have become among teens and young adults, there seems to be a lot of confusing information out there on the Internet – some of it true, some, not so much. This list will debunk some common STD myths, so that you can become more educated about your sexual health and continue to protect yourself in the future.
MYTH: “I can’t get an STD if it’s my first time having sex.”
FACT: You can contract an STD from having sex with ANYONE – even if it’s your first time.
Even if it is your first time being sexually active, you can still contract an STD from your partner. If your partner has had previous sexual activity, make sure that they have been tested for STDs and come back with a clean bill of health. Sexual history is an important topic for you and your partner to discuss before engaging in any sexual activity.
MYTH: “I will be able to tell if my partner has an STD.”
FACT: There are often no physical signs that a person has an STD
You might think you’ll somehow know if your partner has an STD by just looking at them, but in reality, that’s not the case at all. STDs often take a long time to show physical symptoms, and some don’t show signs at all. Even if you or your partner feels 100% healthy, it is still possible to have and transmit an STD.
MYTH: “If I use two condoms, it will protect me from STDs even more than one will.”
FACT: It’s important to only wear ONE condom
When you double up condoms, the friction between the two can rub against each other and actually cause breakage. This can cause the transfer of STDs and may even cause accidental pregnancy.
MYTH: “I can’t contract an STD if I’m not having intercourse.”
FACT: You can contract an STD from oral or anal sex, as well as vaginal intercourse.
Many STDs can be contracted via semen, blood, or genital contact. Infections such as oral herpes, chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HPV can all be contracted via oral sex.
MYTH: “If I’ve had a Pap Smear, I don’t need to get tested for STDs.”
FACT: Pap Smears do not test for STDs.
Pap smears are tests that check for abnormalities in the cervix that can be indicative of cervical cancer, but do not check for STDs. The HPV virus can put you at risk for cervical cancer, so it is important to women to have Pap Smears done regularly, as well as STD testing.
If You’re Pregnant:
If you think may be pregnant, you could be at risk of having an STD. Untreated STDs can complicate your pregnancy, and have potentially serious health effects on both you and your baby. For these reasons, it is extremely important for you to get tested for an STD.
If you’ve had unprotected sex or think you may be pregnant, Turning Point is here for you. Make your free and confidential appointment with Turning Point today, and our friendly and caring staff can help you with your next steps.