Cases of some sexually transmitted disease( STDs) have reached an all-time high, according to a new report from the Middle for Disease Control and Prevention( CDC ).
From 2014 to 2015, there was a 6 percentage increase in diagnosed cases of chlamydia and a 13 percentage increase in gonorrhea.
The craziest part: The actual number of people with STDs is likely much higher than what the CDC is reporting, because many people have no clue theyre infected, the CDC says.
Thats because STDs often depict no noticeable symptoms.
Sexually transmitted infections( STIs) are often called a silent outbreak for the very reason that they dont typically have outward signs, mentions Debby Herbenick, Ph.D ., M.P.H ., a sex researcher at the University of Indiana.
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This means that you could be infected and not even know itand same goes for your collaborator. Read on for four common STDs that might have already snuck up on you, and what you should do about it.
SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASE: GONORRHEA
This bacterial illness is spread through unprotected vaginal, oral, or anal sex. As a result, it can cause infections in your genitals, rectum, or throat.
Condoms are nearly 100 percentage effective at preventing communication of the disease, mentions Khalil Ghanem, M.D ., Ph.D ., associate professor of medication and infectious disease at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.( Dental dams can be protective if youre making oral sex to a woman .)
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Signs of gonorrhea : Women often dont have any symptoms, mentions Herbenick. And when they do, the signs are typically mild and may mimic a bladder infectionmeaning she may not know shes infected, and theres no way for you to tell during sex.
As for guys: If the infection is in your throat or rectum, you probably wont have any symptoms, mentions Dr. Ghanem.
If the bacteria is targeting your penis, you may understand a greenish or yellowish penile discharge or a burning sensation when you pee-pee, Dr. Ghanem mentions. Testicular pain is another possibility, although its rare. These difficulties typically creep up 3 to 5 days after an exposure.
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Left untreated, gonorrhea can cause something called epididymitis, an inflaming of your testicles that may lead to infertility.
How to see gonorrhea : The CDC recommends routine annual screenings for men. But ask your doctor whats right for you, since it may depend on risk factors like how often you have new spouses, mentions Herbenick.
How to treat gonorrhea : The good news is that gonorrhea can usually be cured with antibiotics.
But Some Gonorrhea Strains Are Resistant To Antibiotics, so make sure to follow up with medical doctors to make sure all the bacteria has been killed, mentions Herbenick.
SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASE: CHLAMYDIA
Chlamydia, another bacterial infection, is spread through unprotected vaginal, oral, or anal sex, mentions Dr. Ghanem.
As with gonorrhea, condoms are nearly 100 percentage effective at preventing the spread. And if youre making oral sex to a woman, dental dams can reduce your risk.
Signs of chlamydia : Chlamydia rarely has noticeable symptoms in either women or men, mentions Herbenick.
In the off-chance you do show signs of infection, the symptoms could include a penile discharge or burning when you pee-pee, mentions Dr. Ghanem. These difficulties typically creep up about a few weeks after an exposure.
Severe infections in humen that are not treated quickly can cause scarring in your urethra, constructing it more challenging to peeand it may even necessitate surgery.
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How to see chlamydia : The CDC recommends annual screening for homosexual or bisexual humen. Nonetheless, straight humen should ask their doctors about testing as well.
How to treat chlamydia: Chlamydia can be cured with antibiotics.
SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASE: HERPES
Genital herpes is caused by two viruses: Herpes simplex type 1( HSV1 ), that are generally affects your mouth as cold sores, and herpes simplex type 2( HSV2 ), which mainly targets your genitals.
Sexual contact can spread your partners oral herpes to your genitals or her genital herpes to your mouth. The virus can be spread even if youor your partnerdont have any signs of it.
Wearing condoms can help protect you, but not completely: Theyre merely 80 percentage effective for preventing herpes communication, mentions Dr. Ghanem. Thats partly because the virus can live on parts of your skin that arent are subject to the condom.
Signs of herpes : Up to 70 percent of people infected with the virus dont have symptoms, Dr. Ghanem says.
If you do, you may notice blisters or ulcers on your genitals, or just feel some burning and itching.
When first infected, some patients will develop fevers, colds, swollen lymph nodes, headaches, and fatigue.
How to see herpes : Have medical doctors take a look at any suspicious sores.
How to treat herpes : Theres no panacea for genital herpes, but antiviral medications can ease your symptoms, according to the CDC.
SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASE: HUMAN PAPILLOMA VIRUS( HPV )
HPV, which comprises more than 150 related viruses, is the most common STI, according to the CDC.
There are two main kinds: low peril, that are generally merely make genital warts, and high risk, which can lead to penile, anal, and cancers. You can catch it via intercourse, oral sex, or even skin-to-skin contact during sex.
Using condoms during sex can reduce, but not eradicate, your chances of infection, mentions Michael Krychman, M.D ., executive director of the Southern California Center for Sexual Health.
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Signs of HPV : HPV almost never has visible symptoms, mentions Herbenick.
Most stress dont make warts, and when they do, theyre often tinynot like the
scare photos from your high schools health class
How to see HPV : Unfortunately, “there wasnt” currently recommended exams to see HPV in humen, Dr. Ghanem says.
How to treat HPV : While warts can be frozen off, removing the lesion doesnt cure your infection. The warts can repetition and the infection can still be spread, Dr. Ghanem explains.
Thats why vaccinationwhich is recommended for straight-out humen through age 21, or men who have sex with humen through age 26 and wearing condoms is so important to help reduce your risk, mentions Dr. Krychman.
This article originally appeared on MensHealth.com .