Arming yourself with the facts about your sexual health is crucial. It’s important to know that STIs are contagious and can be spread through sexual activity or bodily fluids like blood and semen. 

Not all STIs are symptomatic, so regular testing is essential if you’re sexually active. 

What Are the Signs of an STI?

Anyone sexually active can get an STI. They are  caused by bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Pregnant women can also contract these diseases and pass them to their babies during pregnancy and childbirth. 

Common signs of STIs include:

  • Painful, burning urination
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding
  • Unusual, odorous vaginal discharge
  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Fever
  • Sore, swollen lymph nodes

If you don’t receive testing and any necessary treatment, you could place your health at risk. Numerous long-term complications can result from untreated STIs, including:

  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
  • Eye inflammation
  • Infertility
  • Heart disease
  • Arthritis 
  • Certain cancers (i.e., HPV-associated cervical and rectal cancers)

Getting Tested

Regular STI testing doesn’t just help with detection and treatment. You’ll learn prevention methods such as:

  • Speaking with your partner about safe sexual practices
  • Staying with one uninfected partner
  • Getting vaccinated
  • Abstaining from illegal drug and excessive alcohol use

Though these conversations can be difficult, they’re necessary. You owe it to yourself to get the facts on STIs and learn how to limit your exposure to significant health issues. 

And if you’re pregnant, getting tested is essential. Untreated STIs can cause pregnancy complications like premature birth or stillbirth. 

We Can Help

WISH Medical Women’s Health offers no-cost STI testing and treatment to women. Testing is provided for chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV, syphilis, bacterial vaginosis (BV), yeast, trichomonas, Hepatitis B, and Hepatitis C. We also offer urine cultures for UTI symptoms. 

Protect yourself and your partner by getting tested. Make a no-cost appointment today to discuss your unique situation and receive answers.