Everyone should know important facts about the overall health of the residents in the city that they live in. The information is available on the internet and through publications which are distributed by local health departments in each community. STD rates are delivered in report form by the CDC. They arrive at their figures with the help of all local health care agencies and providers. Each time a person is tested, important demographic information is collected and sent to the CDC. Analysts are better able to figure out which groups are at the highest risk by looking at which of them most often test positive for particular STDs.
Patterns have emerged over the past decade and have remained consistent, with the exception of rising rates. The table below shows the most recent reports that have been generated for this region and is based upon positive tests per 100,000 in population.
- Chlamydia- 430.6
- Gonorrhea- 107.1
- Syphilis- 8.9
Florida ranks fifth in the nation for incidences of Syphilis. It is over 8 times higher than some other states. Gonorrhea is also high with Chlamydia being the most predominant. Sexually transmitted diseases are occurring in epidemic proportions throughout the US and in this region of Florida. It is important that people understand how great their risk is for getting these diseases and the potential consequences.
Poverty is one of the demographical factors that is included as a risk. There are two reasons for this. The first is that fewer resources means that there is a greater chance that education about sexual health is not readily available. School dropout rates are higher and students may miss out on mandatory sex ed which is provided to all middle school students who attend the private sector schools. The second reason is that there may not be financial resources enough to get quality health care for testing and treatment.
Regardless of ability to pay, there are resources available for STD testing. Private testing is available through STD clinics and free centers are available for anyone who qualifies according to the income guidelines for free or reduced rates. The difficulty is in ensuring that this information gets out to the people who need it.
Each factor of risk combines for creating an overall risk score. The more risk factors that you have, the greater the chances of becoming infected. If you have only one risk factor, and it is having sex with multiple partners or a person that you are unsure of, that is all that is needed. Your race, sex, age or location does not have as great of a bearing on your risks as having unprotected sex.
Being symptom free is wonderful, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are STD free. There are some STDs that do not produce any symptoms in the beginning so you may not know for certain. This is one of the ways that STDs are spread so quickly. They can be passed from one person to another in a short period of time. Sexual habits and behaviors can cause an explosion in the breakout rates when there are multiple partners involved.
Continuing on with educational campaigns including public health seminars and school sex education courses are a good start. More information needs to be disseminated throughout the local communities that will give people the plain facts about STDs. Anyone who has sex ed knows where to go for STD testing, but their parents, aunts and uncles may not. Even though pregnant women get tested as a routine part of prenatal screening, it would be better if they were educated prior to conceiving a child.
Fargo does not have the highest STD rates in the nation, but they are high enough to elicit concern. If you are wondering how great your risk is, you should probably get tested to be certain. Ethnicity, age, financial status, gender and region of residence are factors that have been determined by numbers and frequencies of STD infection by comparison with all other groups. No one of these factors automatically places you at higher risk. Perhaps the biggest determining factor is if you’ve had sex with a partner that may possibly be infected themselves. There are not always symptoms so just because they show no signs does not mean that they are STD free.
When you should get tested
If you cannot say with one hundred percent assurance that you are free from STD infection, you should get tested. Even if you are symptom free, if you have had uprotected sex and believe that you may have been exposed to this type of disease, it is best to take the precaution to protect your sexual health. Ordering testing is easy and you can complete the process in less than twenty minutes by visiting a local testing lab to complete your testing. Your results will arrive shortly and you’ll enjoy the greater peace of mind.