As if April could have MORE month-long observances, April is also STD Awareness Month.
I know… STDs. Everyone’s favorite topic.
But here’s the deal, our 9th grade health teachers were right:
Sexually transmitted diseases and infections are real and they can affect anyone who is “sexually active” — even if you’re in a committed relationship or even if you’ve haven’t gone all the way. Doctors recommend getting tested once a year, and testing is EASY. We have all seen the heinous pictures brought to us by student slideshows, but many infections don’t show symptoms. All STDs, even HIV, are treatable and most are curable, but you have to get tested to start the process.
Getting tested for STDs can be scary, but it isn’t shameful or something to be embarrassed about. Getting tested means you’re being responsible and taking care of yourself and the people you love. Just like getting a yearly check-up, getting a yearly STD test is important — and it’s usually covered by insurance. It can also be confidential, and it could even be something you and your partner do together.
Just like fear of unintended pregnancy, the unknown of STDs puts a lot of stress on you and your relationships. Getting tested and knowing the facts makes life easier, and it makes life safer for everyone involved.
Protect yourself and the people around you and get tested! Click here for a list of testing centers in your area, or visit your nearest Planned Parenthood.