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What is STD Testing?

What is STD Testing?

Tests for sexually transmitted Diseases (STDs) can include blood, urine, or swab tests and the choice of test can depend on your symptoms and/or the condition your doctor suspects.  Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are often called Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and occur quite often unfortunately.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are 68 million plus individuals are living with STDs in the United States back in 2018. It’s likely that many STIs go unreported, so that number is potentially higher today.

Many STD's have no symptoms or very nonspecific symptoms, which can make them hard to notice. Many people are embarrassed which can discourage some people from getting tested and if left untreated, STIs can cause severe health problems, including cancer and infertility. Testing is the only way to know for sure if you have an STD. In this article, we’ll go over who should get tested, where you can get tested, and other frequently asked questions.

What is an STD?

The difference between STDs and STIs is often confused. An STD is defined as a sexually transmitted disease resulting from an STI. These infections occur when bacteria, parasites, or viruses enter the body.  While STDs stem from infections (STIs), having an STI does not necessarily mean you will develop a disease from that infection.

Who should be tested for STIs?

Anyone who has been sexually active, should be tested for STIs or STD's periodically and you should also, get tested if:

  • you are beginning a new relationship.
  • you and your partner are thinking about not using condoms or other barrier methods of birth control
  • your suspect infidelity
  • you or your partner have multiple partners.
  • you have symptoms that suggest you might have an STD

What STIs should you be tested for?

There are a number of different STD's. To learn which ones you want to get tested for, talk with a doctor. They may encourage you to be tested for one or more of the following:

  • chlamydia
  • gonorrhea
  • HIV
  • hepatitis B
  • syphilis
  • trichomoniasis
  • Herpes
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