All across the county STD rates are on the rise, and statistics show that it is the same for the city. Statistics recently released by the CDC indicate that the number of residents who test positive for one or more STD each year is one the rise, and has been for the last two decades.
The fact that the STD rates have been rising unchecked is particularly worrisome to health officials. Not only do the statistics indicate that common STDs like Chlamydia and Gonorrhea are rising, but incidents of primary and secondary Syphilis are also increasing in young and older men. It is also not uncommon for males diagnosed with Syphilis to also test positive for Gonorrhea, which indicates that the disease rates might actually be higher than suggested by the recent statistics.
While teens and young adults continue to be among those with the greatest risk for contracting a sexually transmitted disease, older residents are also testing positive more often. Some of the other statistics that health officials want residents to be aware of include,
- In 2014 there were 1,436 cases of Chlamydia reported in the city and surrounding county.
- African Americans accounted for 130 of the 260 reported cases of Gonorrhea in 2014.
- Out of the total 1,116 cases of Syphilis reported in the state 42 incidents occurred in the county during 2014.
Like many states across the county, Michigan and the city of Ann Arbor rely on the information provided in the abstinence based programs. While public schools are required to teach medically accurate facts regarding STDs and HIV, much of the information students need to protect themselves from these diseases is excluded from these classes.
Even though students may understand that having sexual intercourse can often lead to unplanned pregnancies and STDs, many are not aware that these diseases can be spread through other methods. Without this important information students and some adults never even know that they could be at risk for contracting a sexually transmitted disease.
The lack of information has also lead to several misconceptions that include the simple mistaken belief that a STD could never happen to them. Even with the sexual education classes promoting abstinence as a way to protect themselves, most students are still at risk.
Since not all STDs are spread through intercourse, abstinence is not an effective preventative method. Not understanding how the diseases are spread also makes it easier to pass the viruses on to other students and residents. As long as this continues health officials expect the city’s STD rates to keep rising.
One way to prevent the spread of certain STDs in schools is regular Herpes testing in Ann Arbor. Not only can this help prevent embarrassing flare-ups, it can also stop the spread of the virus in the high schools. Regular HIV testing in Ann Arbor is just as important, especially since it is also the only way to positively detect the virus. If everyone understood how important STD testing is for their continued good health, the city would soon be enjoying lower rates of infection.
The city has an interesting demographical makeup thanks in part to the presence of the state university. The large campus is home to several thousand young adults, many of whom have never been tested for a STD. This has resulted in a large number of college students who don’t even realize that they might be positive for a sexually transmitted disease.
There is also a large naval base in the city and the constant influx of new sailors from other ports is putting local residents at risk. Many bring STDs unknowingly into the area and have already infected residents before they are tested. Without the resources health officials need to ensure that everyone knows how important regular testing is, there is little they can do to lower the rate of sexually transmitted diseases.
What is perhaps the main cause for the high rate of sexually transmitted diseases is the simply lack of available information. Studies have conclusively shown that the most effective method of slowing the spread of these diseases is to educate students and adults. If residents do not understand the risk that they are in, they will never know how important it is for their health and others to be tested on a regular basis.
Other contributing factors include a lack of community health centers, along with budget cuts to neighborhood clinics.
With so much to see and do in this naval city it is easy to forget that it is also dealing with a high rate of STDs and that regular testing is critical for your continued good health. If you have been putting off testing due to long lines at the neighborhood clinics or you simply don’t want to risk running into a familiar face, you do have another option. Now you can schedule confidential STD testing with one simple phone call and only spend a few minutes at a local lab, it is quick, private and gives you peace of mind knowing that you are being responsible for your sexual health.