STD Test Statistics in Illinois
While most counties rank below other similarly sized counties in the region, there are hundreds of chlamydia cases each year. The data shows that these rates have been increasing for people between the ages of 15-24. If you are sexually active and you live in the area, it is important that you ensure your health as well as the health of your sexual partners.
While these numbers don’t look horrible at face value, the amount of patients with STDs is increasing yearly at a fairly steady rate. Education about safe sex practices can go a long way, but testing is a necessary component of keeping any community disease free. Without adequate testing, it’s impossible to control potential outbreaks of sexually transmitted diseases. If more people become aware of their own STD status, it can create a culture of responsibility that will greatly benefit the sexual health of residents in the area.
Denser city centers like Chicago show rates that are far above averages for the rest of the state as well as the rest of the country. You can help combat the stigma by being proactive about sexual health and STD clinics. The resources are readily available, it’s up to you to take the initiative. If everyone makes a concentrated effort, the number of infected individuals will see a significant decline over the next few years. Don’t ignore the warning signs that are present in the statistics.
Even in suburban areas, STD rates have showed significant periods of increase throughout the past decade. While there were also years of decline, the overall trend is still upward. Increased testing can combat these rates.
On a brighter note, rates have declined for gonorrhea over the past few years. However, they are still above national averages in large city centers in Illinois. Increased testing can allow these rates to continue to fall.
Sexual Education About STD Testing
As previously mentioned, STDs are significantly more prominent in the younger members of the Illinois community. Women are especially at risk, and women between the ages of 15-24 show much higher rates of transmission than members of other age groups. It is only through better sexual education that you can prevent younger members of the community from contracting and spreading these diseases.
The other area of concern is the upward trajectory of the reported STDs. While the increase is not severe, any amount is enough to warrant immediate action. Cook County residents in particular have made a concerted effort to increase sexual awareness and education. Public schools have increased the rigor with which they teach sexual health. Governor Pat Quinn in 2013 signed legislation that required more accurate information about STDs and testing be included in sexual education classes.
STI Clinics And Testing Centers
Area residents, especially young adults, should be aware of the many clinics in Illinois that offer assistance to those seeking to know the status of their sexual health. These clinics provide quick, clean, and confidential HIV testing and herpes testing. These tests are no different than other blood tests you would take during a regular visit to the doctor. The process is streamlined and absolutely private. There’s no need to worry, clinicians are skilled at ensuring they provide safe and reliable care to area residents. As educational efforts increase, school officials hope that their students will continue to practice safe sex if or when they decide to become sexually active.
Demographics And Sexual Health
Analyzing demographics is a key way that sexual health professionals are able to target their awareness efforts. Illinois is home to a diverse group of residents and several large city centers. With large centers of people living together, it’s a perfect recipe for an outbreak without proper testing and education.
There is also a significant disparity between genders when looking at data for Illinois as a whole. Females are significantly more likely to contract STDs than men. Additionally, STDs, particularly HIV, are disproportionately more common in African Americans when compared to other races.
This data is alarming, but there are a number of contributing factors. A significant contribution to the racial disparity in STD contraction rates is poverty. As a whole, there are many more African Americans below the poverty line in Illinois. This is especially true in particular parts of Chicago. Without access to affordable treatment or sexual health education, it’s difficult for communities to keep themselves safe and healthy. As education efforts increase, clinicians hope to assist at-risk communities in controlling the spread of STDs. The more people in these communities know about the resources and free clinics that are available, the less STDs will spread.
It is only with increased awareness and education that these numbers will continue to decline. Consider volunteering some of your time to make sure at-risk communities are aware of the free testing in their areas.
STD Testing Summary
In conclusion, there are a variety of factors that contribute to the overall sexual health of a community. One of the most important factors is communication and access to information and treatment centers. This website lists a variety of free clinics where you can get yourself tested. Even if you suspect you are clean, it never hurts to get yourself tested just in case. It is only through being pro-active that communities can eradicate STDs. If everyone increases their awareness and sexual safety, the community as a whole will benefit.
Don’t hesitate to seek out additional information about STD treatment if you do receive a positive test result. Remember that these clinics have your best interest in mind and will never share your personal information. Happy testing!