Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Get tested! It's National STD Awareness Month

Many thanks to the good people at yourstdhelp.com for contributing this guest post on such an important topic. Be sure to check out their site!

April is National STD Awareness Month, an important annual observance to raise awareness about sexually transmitted diseases. With April coming to an end, the CDC and other various sexual health organizations are encouraging everyone who is or has been sexually active to get tested.

Sexually transmitted diseases are a growing concern in this country, with an estimated 19 million new cases of STDs each year and climbing. The latest statistics of reportable infections from 2008 found that chlamydia infections rose 9.2 percent, topping off at a whopping 1.2 million cases in 2008. Syphilis rates increased 18 percent between 2007 and 2008. One in five people have genital herpes and one in four people have HPV, which has been found to cause cervical, anal, penile and throat cancer. With such high infection rates, it's important to get tested regularly.

In observance of the holiday, many health organizations, state health departments and clinics are offering free testing to uninsured patients. You can find a list organized by state of free clinics here.

The month is almost over and it may be harder to get tested for free, so make an appointment today and be sure of your status.

And be sure to practice safe sex!

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