Irving and surrounding Dallas County are currently dealing with a high STD rate, and have been for awhile.
There has been a slight decrease in Gonorrhea infections, Chlamydia diagnoses have continued to rise in young Hispanic and African American women. Health officials are also dismayed to see incidents of primary and secondary Syphilis are on the rise, and in 2013 the data indicates that positive diagnoses had increased 31 percent over the previous year. With the rise in an STD many thought to be under control, city leaders are realizing the public needs to be informed of the risks associated with STDs.
Some of the statistics causing city leaders and health officials concerns include;
- 92 percent of all incidents of primary and secondary Syphilis occurred in men, according to 2013 statistics.
- There were 4,747 reports of Gonorrhea in 2013, with 36 percent of the diagnoses occurring in African American men and women ages 15 to 24.
- In 2013 there were over 14,000 cases of Chlamydia diagnosed, with the majority of the incidents occurring in Hispanic and African American women.
- Statistics show that men between the ages of 24 to 35 have the highest risk of contracting primary or secondary Syphilis
With the city’s rising STD rates and increasing number of teen pregnancies, it is clear that the current abstinence only program is not working in the public schools.
The current sexual education program does discuss some of the changes teens experience during puberty and it also covers the basics of the reproductive system, but it does not adequately stress the dangers of unprotected sex. This leaves teens unaware of the potential risks to their health they may be facing, including contracting an STD.
While abstinence can prevent pregnancies the high number of teenage mothers indicates that students are still engaging in sex, and increasing their chances of contracting an STD.
Regular Herpes testing in Irving is especially important for students, since this viral infection is common and easily spread in schools. The test only takes a couple of minutes, and early treatment can even prevent future embarrassing flare-ups.
Some STDs do not always display any immediate symptoms which is why regular HIV testing in Irving is critical for continued good health. The simple test could potentially save your life, and that of someone you love.
Certain cultural and religious beliefs that frown on sex before marriage can make it difficult for teens and even some adults to admit that they are sexually active. Stereotypes regarding certain STDs can also cause some residents to ignore the problem, and put others in their life at risk.
The lack of education in the classrooms is also affecting the city’s STD rates, and many do not even realize that they are engaging in risk behaviors. While abstinence might be an effective tool at preventing pregnancies, it cannot stop the spread of certain STDs.
A shortage of community health care centers, especially in lower income neighborhoods, can make it difficult for some residents to get tested and some families simply cannot afford the fees. Many of the city’s lower income residents are often engaged in risky behaviors which increases their chances of contracting an STD, and spreading it to others in the community.
Language barriers in the Hispanic communities and a general mistrust of officials are also contributing to the city’s high STD rates.
STI clinics are in Irving, and can give you confidential results, usually in 24 – 48 hours. While you can also find out your status at a public HIV center, privacy is often a concern. You’ll find the same issues with mobile STD tests. It only takes a few minutes before your on your way, which means you’ll make it to the Cowboys opening kickoff.