Part of the Phoenix metropolitan area there is plenty for residents to see and do in Gilbert, Arizona, but it is also important to stop in at one of the STD clinics and get tested for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Hepatitis B, C, Herpes, Syphilis and HIV. While there are free STD testing centers in Gilbert, AZ the long lines have many residents searching for a more convenient option. Now you can schedule private STD testing with one simple phone call and only spend 15 to 20 minutes at the local lab, which still gives you plenty of time to explore some of the city’s parks or even take in a show put on by the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences.
Recently released statistics show an alarming trend in STD rates for Gilbert and surrounding Maricopa County. For the last twenty years the incident rate for sexually transmitted diseases has continued to rise, and the statistics seem to indicate that these numbers are not likely to improve.
What really has health officials worried is the rising number of residents who test positive for primary and secondary Syphilis. While high Chlamydia and Gonorrhea rates were expected, especially since these sexually transmitted diseases have been steadily increasing nationwide, the growing number of Syphilis cases is surprising.
Between 2005 and 2014 the number of primary and secondary Syphilis diagnoses rose from 122 to 396. The majority of diagnoses were in older men, and statistics show that there is also a large number who tested positive for more than one STD. Some of the other statistics recently released include;
- In 2005 there were 99 men who tested positive for primary and secondary Syphilis compared to 360 in 2014.
- There were 23 women diagnoses with primary and secondary Syphilis in 2005, which rose to 36 in 2015.
- Chlamydia cases climbed from 12155 in 2005 to 19889 in 2014.
- While Gonorrhea rates did dip slightly in 2008 and 2009, the number of diagnoses has more than doubled to 5529 in 2014.
With these statistics health officials agree that it is more important than ever for everyone to get tested regularly for an STD.
While it is not uncommon for public school systems to use the abstinence only sexual education program, the city of Gilbert has taken it a step further. Not only does the city school system only teach that abstinence is the “best” way to prevent pregnancy and STDs in its limited sexual education program, it has now placed stickers on high school biology books in an attempt to limit the amount of scientific information students receive about their reproductive systems.
With the advent of this new program health officials are seeing teen pregnancy and STD rates soar in students, and unfortunately expect these numbers to continue to rise.
Without comprehensive sexual education programs in the schools teens and even their parents will not realize how important it is to get tested for all of the STDs regularly. Along with teaching teens the importance of always using protection during sexual activity, these classes can also explain why abstinence cannot prevent all STDs.
Some sexually transmitted diseases can be passed through casual contact, and not everyone immediately displays noticeable symptoms. Regular Herpes testing in Gilbert can help stop the spread of this common STD in high schools, and early treatment can also prevent embarrassing flare ups.
Regular HIV testing in Gilbert is especially important, especially considering the lack of sexual education. The simple test only takes a couple of minutes, and it can help save your life and that of your partner.
Demographics play a large role in the STD rates and this includes cultural and religious beliefs, along with age, gender and income. It should also be noted that Gilbert is part of Maricopa county which includes a large prison population who also has a high rate of STDs.
The inmate turnover rate is extremely high, which results in a higher risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease. Without regular STD testing recently released inmates will only continue to add to the growing problem.
The city’s lack of community health facilities and strong conservative beliefs also make it difficult for residents to get tested regularly. Many residents are afraid of running into a friend or family member at one of the clinics, and prefer to ignore the problem instead of getting tested. The strong moral beliefs of many adults can also make it difficult for teens to admit that they are sexually active, which only increases their risks of contracting a STD.
Lower income families often find it difficult to afford regular health screenings, and the lack of neighborhood clinics only adds to the problem. When this is combined with the complete lack of sexual education the risk of contracting a STD can increase rapidly.
Other demographical factors that are contributing to the increasing number of reported STDs are age and gender. Teens and young adults make up the majority of reported STDs and statistics show that these numbers are increasing every year. Until there is comprehensive sexual education programs implanted in the classroom, and everyone understands how important it is to be tested for STDs regularly the number of residents infected will continue to rise.
Before you wander along one of the natural trails or head out to the big city it is important to take a few minutes and take care of your sexual health. While there are health clinics in the city, the long lines that are common have many residents looking for another option. Now you can schedule confidential STD testing with one simple phone call and only spend 20 minutes at the local lab, which still gives you plenty of time to enjoy one of Gilbert’s scenic parks.