STD report that are generated by the CDC are made public so anyone with an interest can find out about the rates in their local area. Hospitals, physicians and clinics all forward important demographic data for each client that gets STD testing done at their facilities. Strict laws protect privacy so confidentiality is always maintained and no names or other information that could identify a person are shared. They use gender, area of residence, age, ethnicity, financial status and the type of test/results to generate reports. These are used to monitor the health of each area within the nation. A database is maintained and comparisons are made to analyze problem areas so local health departments can take the appropriate actions to help raise community awareness about sexual health.
The following table shows the current rates of STD infections per 100,000 in population for this area.
- Chlamydia- 447.2
- Gonorrhea- 97.9
- Syphilis- 4.3
Analysis of this information has been useful in breaking the data down into reports that are meaningful in terms of determining who has the highest frequency of positive testing results for each STD. Patterns have emerged over the last decade and have remained amazingly consistent. The numbers are rising but the same groups lead the numbers. From these reports we know that women are diagnosed with Chlamydia twice as often as men and that the age most vulnerable for both genders is between twenty and twenty four years with those in the teens placing second in frequency.
According to the facts as reported over the past decade, people with the highest STD rates are Blacks who have the greatest frequency, American Indians/Alaskan Natives and Hispanics. This does not mean that being of this ethnicity automatically puts you in a risk category, it simply means that this is where the highest number of positive test results are generated. Age, financial status and other demographics show who is consistently being infected but the overriding factor that leads to STD infection is sexual behavior.
Unprotected sex is the leading risk factor for getting an STD and it does not depend on a race, gender or age. It is universal and anyone who takes this risk may end up with an STD.
Gonorrhea rates are slightly in men than women and the same is true for Syphilis, all stages.
It is believed that poverty has a significant effect on the number of individuals who seek and receive STD testing and follow up treatment when needed. This is because there is often a lack of information available to them on prevention methods and safe sex practices. A secondary factor is the lack of finances to secure quality health care for testing and treatment. Finally, people who are not exposed to educational resources may not know that there are resources available which have been designated for their use. There are many people who are in high risk categories who do not get tested. The numbers may seem high now, but if everyone who is contributing to the epidemic would get testing, the numbers would rise even higher before the trend could be reversed with safer practices.
STD clinics are in existence in this area and they offer private and confidential testing with professionally staffed labs. Free testing centers may be accessed by people who do not have the means to pay the full cost of STD testing services and they may qualify for either free or reduced rates. More people need to be informed and encouraged to get their testing done. This is the only way that the current explosion in STD rates is going to come down.
Become educated on sexual health and the signs and symptoms for each type of STD that is prolific in your area. If you have any of these, you should get tested immediately. If you believe that you may have been exposed because of sexual contact with someone whose sexual health or monogamy you cannot verify, your risk has gone up and you should get tested.
Ordering STD testing could not be easier and it takes a few moments of your time to stop by a local lab to finish the process. Your privacy is protected so you can rest easy that the testing and results will be delivered with complete confidentiality. Put away any concerns and take all measures to protect your health by taking the steps that will help you to know for certain. If you know someone, perhaps a friend or relative who is worried that they may have been exposed to an STD, share this information with them and encourage them to get their testing done. There is no shame in protecting your health so you can enjoy a brighter and healthier future without the worry. Find out for yourself how hassle free the process is.