woman curious if STDs are contagious

Are STDs Contagious?

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are infections or diseases spread by sexual contact. Unlike illnesses like the flu, you cannot catch them by breathing the same air or touching an unclean surface.

STDs are caused by bacteria, viruses, and even parasites. They usually pass from person to person through blood, semen, or bodily fluids. 

Common Ways To Spread STDs:

1. Having Sex

STDs can spread through sex with an infected individual. Semen or the vaginal fluids can pass the disease to an uninfected partner. With an STD like herpes, it can spread through open sores and saliva as well.

While condoms can reduce the likelihood of spreading or catching an STD, they do not offer 100% protection. Abstinence is the most reliable way to prevent catching or spreading an STD.

2. Having Sex With Several Partners

The more sexual partners a person has, the greater the chances they will be infected. Sometimes symptoms are mild or non-existent, and the partner might not even be aware of their infection. 

3. Injecting Drugs

This is particularly true if needles are shared or used in an unclean environment. There’s also a risk of catching an STD through unregulated tattoos or piercings using dirty needles.

STDs and Pregnancy

If a woman thinks she might be pregnant, she must get tested for STDs. Here are some of the reasons:

1. Pregnant Women Can Spread STDs to Their Babies

This is particularly true about untreated syphilis. Babies can be infected in the uterus or as they exit the birth canal. 

2. Untreated STDs Need to Be Treated Before an Abortion

Chlamydia and gonorrhea tend to first infect the vaginal area. During an abortion, they can spread into the uterus. 

If left untreated, they can develop into a serious condition called pelvic inflammatory disease (PID.) PID can lead to sterility and chronic pelvic pain.

It’s vital to be tested before moving forward with an abortion.

Start with Chester County Connect Care

If you think you might be pregnant, and need a supportive place to make a decision and learn about your pregnancy options, start with us! At Chester County Connect Care, we are here to help you. 

Our experienced medical team can provide no-cost pregnancy tests and ultrasounds. We can also give you local referrals that can test and treat you for STDs. 

Contact us today, and let us provide the assistance you need!

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