10 things you didn’t know about STDs

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A sexually transmitted disease – abbreviated as STD – is frightening for many. Rightly so, because an STD can cause damage to your body and you can easily pass the disease on to others. Only testing provides certainty. But there is a taboo on testing and many are reluctant to visit a doctor or GGD. Time to clarify some issues surrounding STDs.

10. 80,000

Is estimated to be the number of STDs contracted in the everywhere each year. Note: estimate. The actual numbers may be higher because many people keep walking around with an STD. There are more than 160,000 STD consultations with general practitioners every year. The majority of STDs are not diagnosed …

9. Chlamydia

Most common in the Netherlands. With both men and women, gay and straight, young and old. Chlamydia is a bacterial STD that treats you with antibiotics. The treatment is simple, provided the STD is detected at an early stage. Chlamydia can become dangerous if you continue to walk around with it. In women, infertility is the greatest risk. Because you do not always notice something of chlamydia, you run the risk of walking unnoticed with it. With all the associated risks. So testing.

8. Complaints

An STD often gives no complaints. For example, a majority does not suffer from chlamydia at all. It is therefore impossible to sense whether you have an STD. Of course there are complaints that may indicate an STD but only testing provides 100% certainty. Never go with your STD on your feeling.

7. HIV as a chronic disease

HIV is often incorrectly seen as a deadly disease. However, with the right medication, HIV is a chronic disease that you will not die of anymore. Fortunately. And in the Netherlands, medication is reimbursed by the insurer. So you must know that you have HIV before it develops in Aids. So also test here. Incidentally, HIV is fortunately much rarer than an STD like chlamydia.

6. Treatment

STD is a collective term for sexually transmitted diseases. The disorders differ. There are bacterial and viral STDs but also fungal parasites. You treat the most common STDs with antibiotics. With this you can only treat bacterial STDs. HIV, not a viral STD. Treatment is always done through a doctor and medication is only available on prescription.

5. Testing without a cotton swab for men

Men test for STDs with urine and / or blood. The man no longer has to go into the penis with a cotton swab to take body material. This used to be the case. A test based on urine is sufficient for chlamydia and gonorrhea. So testing has become easy for men. Painless, by the way. The woman has to test with a cotton swab.

4. An STD can be at different locations

An STD is often genital (penis or vagina). Logical right? But did you know that an STD can also be contracted orally or anally? An anal STD is often overlooked because this location is not being tested. The same goes for an oral STD, although it is a bit rarer. If you have anal contacts, you must also do anal testing. Pay attention!

3. Incubation time

An STD cannot be detected immediately. If you had unsafe sex last weekend, you cannot test yet. An STD has a so-called incubation period. This is the time that must pass before testing can take place. For chlamydia and gonorrhea this is 10 days. With HIV this can vary between 14 and 90 days, depending on which test is used. Testing before the incubation period has expired makes no sense!

2. Contagious

If you have unsafe sex with someone who has chlamydia, the chance is around 50 percent that you will get the STD. A STD like chlamydia is therefore highly contagious, it is not without reason that it is so common. Fortunately, HIV is less contagious but still something to watch out for.

1. Test at home

Traditionally, testing is possible at the doctor and the GGD. But nowadays also from home and just as reliable. The Sola tests from Openlab are an example of this. You test by taking body material yourself and sending it by post. Your material is then examined in a laboratory. This is therefore just as reliable as a general practitioner or GGD. But you remain anonymous. This makes testing easier and you can detect STDs faster.

Eventually prevention naturally remains better than cure. So always use a condom until you know for sure that you do not have an STD.


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