Sexually transmitted diseases remains a major public health concern across the country. Of special concern is young people age 15 to 24.
- Americans 15 to 24 account for 27 percent of the population, but account for 50 percent of the 20 million new sexually transmitted infections in the U.S. each year.
- Multiple factors put youth at risk including insufficient screening, confidentiality concerns, lack of access to healthcare and multiple sex partners.
- Undiagnosed sexually transmitted infections leave 24,000 young women infertile each year.
Lincoln Trail District Health Department’s county health centers provide confidential counseling as well as testing and treatment of many sexually transmitted diseases. With fees based on income, confidential testing is provided to male and female teens and adults for the following: chlamydia, syphilis, HIV and gonorrhea.
It’s important to be open and honest with your healthcare provider about your sexual history and whether you should be tested for STDs. It’s also important to be aware of your risk of sexually transmitted infection. Anyone who is sexually active is at risk and is strongly encouraged to follow testing recommendations.
Here’s a summary of testing recommendations:
- Anyone from age 13 to 64 should be tested for HIV at least once.
- Annual chlamydia screening for all sexually active women age 25 and younger, as well as older women with risk factors such as new or multiple sex partners.
- Syphilis, HIV, chlamydia, and hepatitis B screening for all pregnant women, and gonorrhea screening for at-risk pregnant women starting early in pregnancy, with repeat testing as needed, to protect the health of mothers and their infants.
- Screening at least once a year for syphilis, chlamydia, and gonorrhea for all sexually active gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (those who have multiple or anonymous partners should be screened every three to six months.
- Anyone who has unsafe sex or shares injection drug equipment should get tested for HIV at least once a year. Sexually active gay and bisexual men may benefit from more frequent testing (e.g., every three to six months).
LEARN MORE: Check out these fact sheets for information you need about specific sexually transmitted diseases.