Statistics released by the CDC and Washoe County Health Department show that while the city does not have a STD rate equal or above the state’s, it is still extremely high given its smaller population. In 2015 alone the HIV rate was reported at 237.4 per 100,000 people.
It is not just HIV incidents that are rising, but the rates for all STDs are increasing across the county. Since 2009 Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Syphilis rates have risen significantly, and the statistics indicate that the number of infections reported annually is only expected to rise.
The high number of Syphilis incidents reported each year is causing concern among local health officials. Fifteen years ago this infectious disease was thought to be well under control, and now rates are rising at an alarming rate. Teens, young adults and men who have same sex partners do have the highest rate of infection, but this is rapidly changing.
Older residents are also testing positive more often for Syphilis, and surprising to health officials they are contracting Gonorrhea with increasing frequency. Since 2013 the Gonorrhea rates for the city and county have increased by as much as 40 percent, across all demographics.
With STD rates this high it has never been so important for residents to make testing a regular part of their health care routine. Some of the statistics that highlight the growing STD problem include,
- In 2014 the Chlamydia rate for the county was reported at 380.8 per 100,000 residents.
- Between 2013 and 2015 the Gonorrhea rate for the city and county rose by 40 percent.
- The HIV rate for the area was reported at 237.4 per 100,000 residents in 2014.
Currently the state and subsequently the city use the curriculum recommended by the federal government in the sex education classes offered in the public schools. Since the curriculum is abstinence based the majority of the city’s students graduate from high school not aware of the risks and responsibilities that come with being sexually active.
According to recent nationwide and local surveys over 80 percent of high school seniors have engaged in some type of sexual activity before graduation. This clearly shows that teenagers are still becoming sexually active even with parents and educators encouraging abstinence. The surveys also showed that teens are becoming sexually active at a younger age. This means that some students are at risk for contracting a STD before they even enter into high school.
What is surprising is that the state does not require public school districts to use abstinence based curriculum. The decision on what to include in their sex education classes is left strictly up to the individual districts. This means that students could receive the information that they need to protect themselves from STDs, instead of being taught to simply abstain from intercourse until they are married.
This means that students do not realized that regular Herpes testing in Sparks could prevent this common virus from infecting them. Regular HIV testing in Sparks is just as important, and all residents regardless of age, ethnicity or sexual preference need to have the simple procedure performed. The test is also the only way to positively detect the disease, and it could potentially save your life.
Its relatively close proximity to Reno is contributing to the city’s STD rate. It is not uncommon for residents to work and play in the larger city, and this can put them at an increased risk for contracting a sexually transmitted disease.
Since teens and young adults are not taught in their sex education classes how STDs are spread, many grow up never realizing that their behavior could be putting them at risk. Most residents are not aware that STDs can be transmitted through a variety of methods, and that it is possible to contract one without being sexually active. The importance of regular STI testing is never discussed, which means the majority of residents only have the procedure done when they think that they might have been exposed.
This makes it extremely easy for STDs to spread throughout the city, and the rates will continue to rise unless changes are made to the education policies.
There is also a shortage of STI clinics in the area, and this is making it difficult for residents to get the care that they need. Long lines are common and most people don’t want to spend the day sitting in a crowded waiting room. With the majority of the city’s residents putting off this important health checkup it is easy to see why the STD rates are rising.
Before you tour the Old Glendale School are sample a beer at the local brewery it is important to take a few minutes to take care of your sexual health. If you don’t want to spend the day waiting at a crowded STI testing center there is a faster and easier option for you to take advantage of. With one phone call you can schedule confidential STD testing and only spend a few minutes at a local lab, this way you can raise a glass at the Great Basin Brewing Company to celebrate your good sexual health.