It is absolutely essential that sexually active individuals consistently use protection in order to prevent contracting sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). However, because many STDs do not always show immediate signs or symptoms, it is also crucial to receive regular screening.
What Type of Testing?
The type and frequency of testing needed will depend on a variety of factors, including age, sexual behavior and existing conditions. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) offers several general recommendations:
- All individuals between the age of 13 and 64 should be tested for HIV at least once.
- Those who practice unsafe sex or share syringes should receive HIV screening annually.
- Women younger than 25 years who are sexually active should be tested yearly for Chlamydia and gonorrhea, as should older women with multiple or new partners.
- Pregnant women and at risk women should receive screening for syphilis, Chlamydia, HIV, hepatitis B and gonorrhea in order to prevent health complications for infant and mother.
Getting tested for STDs regularly is one of the most important steps that sexually active individuals can take to protect their health and the health of loved ones. Call the office of James E. Ramseur, Jr. M.D. at 831-649-1144 to learn more about prevention, screening and treatment.