Health officials in Santa Rosa and surrounding Sonoma County have noticed reported sexually transmitted diseases are on the rise. This is especially worrying to city and county officials considering the relatively small population.
Due to the rural location many city leaders believed that they did not have a reason to be concerned about the spread of STDs, even with infections rising. The data that was just released indicates that even though there might be fewer residents per square mile, they are still at risk for a sexually transmitted disease.
It is not just Chlamydia and Gonorrhea infections that are on the rise, statistics also show that the number of HIV and Syphilis incidents is also growing. This is worrisome to officials, considering many thought that Syphilis infections were no longer a problem. With the increase in drug use among older men, these sexually transmitted diseases are on the rise again.
Some of the statistics that are causing concern in recent years include,
- In 2014 an estimated 1,632 women were diagnosed with Chlamydia for an incident rate of 329.2 per 100,000 residents.
- The incident rate for primary and secondary Syphilis in men was reported at 11.5 percent, with 66.7 percent of the diagnose reported in Caucasian men
- Women between the ages of 20 and 24 are at the highest risk of contracting Gonorrhea and Chlamydia.
In response to the rising number of reported sexually transmitted infections and teen pregnancies the state of California has now made it illegal for public schools to only offer programs funded by the government that limit the material to abstinence. In providing comprehensive sexual education programs for students in middle and high school, health officials are hopeful that the number of pregnancies and STDs will begin to decrease.
This appears to already be occurring across the state, including in Santa Rosa and surrounding Sonoma County. With students and parents beginning to understand how sexually transmitted infections are spread, the number of teens who test positive is beginning to drop. This is not to say that the city has nothing to worry about, only that the proactive approach to sexual education does seem to be working.
There are still some problems that mainly stem from parents who are not comfortable with their children learning about safe sex or how sexual diseases are transmitted. As long as some students and their families are not aware of all the ways sexually transmitted infections are spread the numbers will continue to rise. Since some of the viruses can be spread through casual contact it is important to have regular Herpes testing in Santa Rosa. It is also vital for your continued good health to have regular HIV testing in Santa Rosa made part of your routine.
There are several demographical factors that can affect the STD rates for a city, and this often includes race, age, and religious beliefs. While there might be a smaller population in Santa Rosa it is still diverse, which can make it difficult for health officials to ensure that everyone realizes how important it is to schedule regular tests for all of the sexually transmitted diseases. Some of this is due to language barriers, especially among the Hispanic population.
The large number of seasonal workers is also contributing to the problem, especially since the majority of these employees are never tested for any of the sexually transmitted diseases. This makes them a particular danger to permanent residents, especially those who might become friendly with the temporary employees.
Many of the area’s residents also have strict conservative beliefs, which makes it difficult for teens and young adults to discuss and sexual problems that might have. This can also lead to embarrassment and a fear of being seen getting tested, which causes many younger residents to ignore any potential problems.
A shortage of available health centers and an inability to pay is also causing STD rates to rise, despite the comprehensive sexual education classes. Older residents who are staying sexually active long are also causing the percentage of sexually transmitted infections to climb, especially since many people do not even realize that they are potentially at risk.
Public HIV clinics and mobile testing are a few of your STD testing options. If you want to remain anonymous and still get affordable results within 1 – 2 days, there are STI centers in Santa Rosa. It is easy to pop in, even on your way to Safari West Park.