Home of the iconic Cowboys football team and known for its fabulous Arts District, there is something for everyone in Dallas, Texas. This thriving metropolis is also experiencing a dramatic increase in STD rates that include Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Hepatitis B and C, along with Herpes, HIV and Syphilis. While there are a growing number of free STD testing centers springing up in Dallas, TX, the long lines have many residents choosing a different option. With one simple phone call you can schedule private STD testing and only spend 15 to 20 minutes at the local STD clinic, which still gives you plenty of time to catch one of the city’s professional sports teams.
STD Test Statistics in Dallas, TX
For the past twenty years residents of Dallas, TX have been dealing with an increase in the number of reported cases of STDs, and one of the most surprising is the 31 percent rise in Syphilis among males. The number of women who are diagnosed with Chlamydia is also rising, though some city health officials point out that Gonorrhea seems to be coming under control. While this might be seen as a positive sign to some officials, overall the STD statistics in Dallas are still among the highest in the state.
Between 2003 and 2013 the number of men diagnosed with first or secondary Syphilis rose 31 percent, which is surprising to some Texas health officials considering this disease had last peaked during the 1940’s. Some of the other STD statistics that are causing concern among state and city officials include,
- It is estimated that 92 percent of all Syphilis cases occur in men.
- The most common sexually transmitted disease in Dallas County is Chlamydia, which affected 14,285 women in 2013.
- Over 38 percent of all new diagnosis of Chlamydia occurred in African American women, and 31 percent were Hispanic.
As of 2013 the number of new HIV cases reported each year had declined, and many officials believe that this is partially due to improved education. While HIV may have decreased by 28 percent between 2003 and 2013, over 60 percent of the new cases reported are still in men around 35 years of age.
STD Testing and Sexual Education
Like most of the state, the city of Dallas and the independent school district prefer to approach sex education with the belief that abstinence is the best policy. While today’s generation of high school students seem to be more open to signing and keeping abstinence agreements, this is still not the answer to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. The statistics show that Dallas still has one of the highest STD rates in the state, which means that school officials and parents need to realize that some form of sex education is necessary to protect their children.
Many high school and even some college students do not realize the importance of regular Herpes testing in Dallas, TX. Along with being able to spread herpes through casual contact, it is also important to receive HIV testing in Dallas. Herpes not only affects the genitals and mouth, it can also be spread to the eyes. When left untreated it is not only painful and embarrassing, the STD can also be detrimental to your health.
Not everyone who is infected with HIV shows any signs or symptoms, and a simple test can help save your life and possibly someone else’s. Getting tested regularly for any sexually transmitted disease is relatively simple and easy, and it is one way to protect yourself that is often not taught in school.
STD Testing and Demographics
Demographics play a large role in the growing number of STDs in the city and surrounding county. While race and religion do play a role, age and income seem to be two of the biggest contributing factors. In 2013, Dallas county health officials finally admitted that they were facing a health crisis, as the number of teens with sexually transmitted diseases continued to rise.
The lack of education in the independent school district coupled with the growing number of teenagers who are becoming sexually active earlier has lead to this alarming increase in STDs among the city’s youth. Adding to the problem is the lack of response among parents who are too uncomfortable to discuss sex and its dangers with their children. Religious and cultural beliefs can prevent teens from learning about safe sex, along with the city’s lack of STD clinics.
The lack of clinics and testing facilities is particularly noticeable in the city’s poorer neighborhoods, where HIV rates are reaching an all time high. Not only are residents less likely to be able to afford regular testing, there are also not enough clinics to provide service for them all. Lower incomes also affect the school system, and the curriculum offered which means there is less money for extra programs like sex education.
While this does seem to be an endless cycle where there is not any chance of the STD rates improving, there are some community outreach programs that are starting to make a difference. With condoms being more readily available and as city officials begin to implement changes some of the STD rates are slowing showing signs of coming under control.
STD Testing for Better Sexual Health
In between shopping downtown along the Trinity River and catching opening day at the Cowboys game, it is important to remember to schedule confidential STD testing in Dallas, TX. While some STD rates may be decreasing slightly, others are on the rise which makes it extremely important for you to get tested regularly. It will only take a few minutes of your time to make the simple phone call and schedule an appointment at the local lab. You can spend a few minutes taking care of your sexual health, and still make it in time to see all of the excitement of the coin toss and kick off.