Minneapolis, MN is a friendly city featuring all of the amenities of a larger city. There are plenty of activities for people who are just visiting and the residents alike. Many people from rural farming communities enjoy the variety of entertainment and shopping opportunities which are available. In addition to providing a host of recreational activities, there is a growing concern over rising STD cases. Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, Hepatitis B and C, HIV and Herpes cases have been reported and many of these diseases are spreading at an alarming rate. The only way to know for certain whether or not you have been infected is to get STD testing. Ordering STD testing is easy and it only takes a 15 to 20 minute lab visit to get your results on their way. There are STD clinics available for private STD testing. Free STD testing centers are available for anyone who meets the income guidelines.
Local STD testing centers, hospitals and physicians offices regularly submit data that is collected regarding STD testing results to the CDC. This is so analysts can compile the data and determine which groups of people are the most at risk for each particular sexually transmitted disease. No personal information is shared so each client can be assured that their confidentiality and privacy are strictly protected. The following data provides an overview of the number of cases of STDs have been reported in the area per 100,000 in population.
- Chlamydia- 357.3
- Gonorrhea- 72.0
- Syphilis – 10.1
These numbers show only the cases which have been confirmed. Health department officials believe that the actual numbers would be much higher if everyone who is in an at risk group would get tested. Some STDs produce few or no symptoms in the initial stages and a person can be infected and spreading the disease to others without being aware of it. Health care providers and government health department officials realize that the problem is widespread and action must be taken to attempt to arrest the spread of STDs in the region.
The only way to confirm that a person has an STD with 100 percent accuracy is through STD testing. Because the number of cases in youth ages 15 to 19 are increasing, local authorities have joined in the nationwide legislation to provide the much needed sexual health education for youth. Mandatory sexual health education classes have been infused into the regular public school curriculum at the age just prior to when some youth may begin sexual experimentation. It is hoped that this strategy will give youth needed knowledge about the dangers of unprotected sex. Students in this area are told where to go for a Herpes test or HIV testing if they suspect that they may have been exposed to these diseases.
There are pockets of high poverty in the Minneapolis, MN region. It is believed that people from impoverished households are at a significantly higher risk than those from more affluent homes. This is because there is a tendency for those without adequate resources to have less exposure to education regarding sexual health, and they may not have the resources to seek testing and or treatment.
The reports for this area show that Chlamydia infection is the highest among females in the 20 to 24 age group, followed by those in the 15 to 19 group. Persons of Black descent have the highest number of positive results, followed by Hispanics and then Whites. Although females still have rates that are nearly double those of males, the data gathered from the past ten years shows that there is a rising rate among males for Chlamydia infection, and the ages are getting younger. Trends also show that there is an increase in Chlamydia in Native Americans over the past decade.
Slightly higher numbers of women test positive for Gonorrhea than for men with those age 20 to 24 having the highest numbers. Blacks are highest in positives followed by Whites, then Hispanics. The trends show that more women are testing positive for Gonorrhea than in previous years.
The earlier stages of Syphilis, primary and secondary are seen most often in males with far fewer women testing positive. The rates for these infections are farily low among female populations with Black males having the highest incidences of positive test results. Approximately ninety percent of the early Syphilis cases reported were among males who have male to male sex and half of these also showed co-infection with HIV. These cases are becoming more prolific.
Although there are several STD clinics in the area, some people still do not know that they are available. Getting the word out to the masses is still an issue that is being addressed though sponsored outreach programs. Some with limited incomes may have difficulty obtaining free or reduced rates if they seek help at a time when the funding cycle has been depleted. These are a few of the obstacles which can stand in the way of getting tested, however; there are usually resources available for most of the funding year. It just takes a phone call to set up the appointment.
If you are at risk for being infected with a sexually transmitted disease, then the best thing that you can do is to get tested as soon as possible. Testing is easy to order and it won’t take long to complete the process. Friendly lab technicians will assist you in getting confidential STD testing, and they are also available to answer any questions that you may have about the process. You owe it to yourself and your loved ones to maintain the best possible health that you can. Your sexual health is no exception. You’ll discover than the few moments you spend to complete the process will help you to have greater peace of mind. After you make your brief visit for testing, you’ll be on your way to enjoy the sights and sounds of the city.