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Advice about sexually transmitted diseases

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Sexually Transmitted Diseases
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Herpes

Genital herpes affects well over 20,000 people in the UK ever year. Unlike many other STDs, herpes cannot be cured. Recurrent herpes can be treated with antiviral which control the symptoms of the virus but do not eliminate it. The main symptoms of the infection are painful sores in the genital area. These may be preceded by a tingling or burning sensation in the legs, buttocks, or genital region. Although these sores usually disappear after a few weeks, the virus remains in the body and the blisters may recur from time to time. Pregnant women can transmit the virus to their babies and untreated herpes in newborns can cause mental disability and even death.

Syphilis

Syphilis is now less prevalent in the UK with less than 2000 reported case last year. The initial symptom is of this infection is a painless open sore on the penis or in the vaginal area. However, it can also appear near the anus, mouth or even on the hands. If untreated, syphilis can quickly develop into a rash and potentially cause serious risk to the heart and central nervous system. Fortunately, the disease can be effectively treated with Penicillin.

How can I prevent STDs?

Apart form becoming a nun, there are ways to reduce your risk of developing an STD:

- have a monogamous relationship with a partner you can trust
- do not have one night stands
- always use condoms
- avoid anal sex but if necessary wear a condom
- have regular check ups for STDS; the earlier an infection is caught the easier it can be treated

The Final Thought

Sexually transmitted diseases are rare so there's no need to abstain from sex. However, if you have unprotected sex particularly with multiple partners you are putting yourself at risk. Most of the time these viruses and infections are ultimately harmless but sometimes they can have life changing effects. Is not using a condom really worth loosing the ability to become a mother? don't think it wont happen to you. It has to happen to someone.

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