¤ STD's in pregnant women are associated with a number of adverse outcomes
during the birthing process. These outcomes include spontaneous abortion,
prematurity and infection in the newborn. Infections that occur in the mother,
either during or before giving birth, infect 30-70% of infants, and may result
in pneumonia, potentially blinding eye infections, and permanent neurological damage.
Techniques for Prevention and Control
- Condoms are available in drugstores. If used during vaginal or anal intercourse, condoms will stop many germs from entering the body.
- Contraceptive creams and jellies can be used by females, along with a diaphragm or cervical cap, to help prevent germs from reaching the cervix. Creams and jellies can also be used in the anus to give some protection. Remember, they only protect the areas they cover.
- Contraceptive foam is highly effective, because it covers more of the vagina, and can be used in the anus during anal intercourse.
Foams and condoms used together is an excellent protection against both STD's and pregnancy.
- Examine yourself and your partner. Check for a bad smell, unusual discharge, rashes, sores, bumps, itching, swelling, or redness.
- Gargle with hot water and salt immediately following oral sex. This may kill some of the germs in the throat.
- Talk to each other. STD's can be a difficult subject to talk about, but it is your responsibility to your health and the health of your partner.
- Have regular check-ups. As soon as a person becomes sexually active, he/she should receive regular check-ups. (At least once or twice a year.)
- Get tested. If you are having intercourse or oral sex, make your doctor or health care representative test you for gonorrhea, syphilis, and chlamydia.
- If you have a sexually transmitted disease, DO NOT HAVE SEX WITH A PARTNER UNTIL THE DOCTOR SAYS YOU ARE CURED. TELL ALL YOUR PARTNERS THAT THEY SHOULD BE TESTED, AND DO NOT HAVE SEX WITH THEM UNTIL THEY HAVE BEEN CHECKED AND RECEIVED THE NECESSARY TREATMENT.
- IF YOU SUSPECT THAT YOU HAVE AN STD, DO NOT HAVE SEX WITH ANYONE UNTIL YOU GET IT CHECKED OUT.
|¤ "People who are carrying these diseases need to be more open, and share
their experiences. Because people do not hear much about these diseases, they seem to think that they are non existent. Adolescents often think that they are invincible."
¤ "Be educated. Read up on stuff, cause you could go around with something for years and you really wouldn't know. If you're having sex, get a pap smear every year."
|- Teen from Boston Youth Collaborative|
¤ "Protection is so important. You don't want to say you have a STD. It is not something you want."
¤ "It is hard to break it to other people. There are very few guys in college who are willing to deal with it."
¤ "The pain is excruciating. It feels like someone is stabbing you and pulling (the warts) out."
¤ "I feel lucky that my disease was treatable and curable. I am so happy I did not get AIDS."
|-Anonymous chlamydia and genital warts victim|
¤ "If you are going to have sex, wear a condom. Seriously, because even if you do have something it will help (to stop spreading it), and if you don't have something, it will help to prevent you from getting it."
¤ "I'm going to become a nun. I have not had sex since. I've kind of learned my lesson. I'm not as promiscuous as I was before."
|-Anonymous genital warts victim|
¤ "Young women in this day and age feel that they are invisible to STD's and HIV. We need to praise our bodies and take care of them, and search for love and respect within us."
|-Alicia Otero, Counselor and Teen Advocate|