Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can be passed from person to person via various forms of sexual contact. Doctors now refer to sexually transmitted infections (STIs) rather than the older term, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
STIs are most commonly transmitted through penis-and-vaginal sex, but they can also be transmitted through anal sex, oral sex, and, in rare cases, open-mouthed kissing.
This ongoing article on these Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) will discuss a few other types of STIs, their prevention methods, and their diagnosis.
Types of STDs
Genital Warts and Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
More than 100 different varieties of this virus have been discovered by researchers. They spread from person to person during unprotected sex and some of them result in benign genital warts (condylomata acuminata). In addition to several other genital malignancies, four out of every five cases of cervical cancer are caused by other human papillomaviruses.
STIs like HPV are also frequently silent. Nearly half of the women who are infected with the virus show no symptoms at all, according to the National Institute of AIDS and Infectious Diseases. The majority of the time, genital warts develop in groups both inside and outside the vagina, the cervix, and/or the anus. Male venereal warts, which are much less frequent, can develop on the penis, scrotum, or anus. The flesh- or pink-colored growths frequently go away on their own.
When compared to other STIs, genital warts require different interventions. Although the lesions frequently recur, the majority of cases can be controlled with topical wart treatment. Large warts might need to be removed surgically using one of the following techniques: laser surgery, electrocautery (burning), or cryosurgery (freezing).
Symptoms typically occur three months after exposure.
The appearance of clusters of tiny warts both outside and inside of the vagina, on the cervix, or around the anus
Clusters of tiny warts on the penis, scrotum, or anus
Epidemics of syphilis had been reported for centuries prior to the early 1940s when the antibiotic penicillin became widely available for commercial use. Even today, if the scourge is not treated, it can be fatal. Treponema pallidum eventually enters the bloodstream and travels to organs other than the reproductive tract.
Physicians classify the disease’s progression into three stages: primary (stage 1), secondary (stage 2), and tertiary (stage 3). (stage 3). The first sign of syphilis is a hard, round open sore in the genital area known as a chancre (pronounced “shan-ker”). Young women are often unaware that they are infected because the first chancre develops inside the vagina. In contrast, in boys, it forms on the outside of the penis and is immediately noticeable.
Stage 1: Primary Syphilis
- The first symptoms usually appear two to six weeks after exposure and last for four to six weeks.
- Chancres are not painful on the penis, vulva, vagina, cervix, or around the mouth
- Lymph nodes that are inflamed
Stage 2: Secondary Syphilis
Symptoms usually appear one to six weeks after the chancre has healed and last three to six months.
- Light rash with brown sores the size of a penny, usually on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet; may spread to the rest of the body.
- Anus or sores in or around the genitals
- Fever of moderate severity
- Throat discomfort
- Hair loss in patches
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of weight
Stage 3: Tertiary Stage
Symptoms can appear anywhere between two and forty years after the event.
Syphilis affects multiple systems, including the heart and blood vessels, skin, bones, and brain.
HBV can cause liver infection and inflammation. There are chances that a person may have HBV and they spread the virus to others without being aware of it.
Some people have no symptoms. Some people only have the initial infection, which then goes away. Others develop a chronic condition. In chronic cases, the virus continues to attack the liver without being detected, causing irreversible liver damage.
In 2017, the CDC received reports from 3,407 people who were infected with HBV. Taking into account people who do not report having the infection, the number of acute HBV infections may have been closer to 22,100.
Many HBV infections occur during childhood or infancy. This is due to the fact that a mother can pass HBV to her child during childbirth. Doctors rarely diagnose HBV in children because it causes few obvious symptoms.
Symptoms of a new HBV infection may be absent in children under the age of five, as well as in adults with a suppressed immune system. Around 30-50% of those aged 5 and up will show early signs and symptoms, according to Trusted Source.
Acute symptoms appear 60-150 days after virus exposure and can last several weeks to six months.
A person with a chronic HBV infection may experience recurring bouts of abdominal pain, fatigue, and aching joints.
The early indications of HBV may include:
- Joint pain
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal pain
- Dark urine
- Clay-colored stools
Scabies is contagious and can easily spread from person to person via close physical contact. This increases the likelihood of outbreaks in close quarters, such as the family home, a childcare group, a school class, or a nursing home.
It can, however, affect people of all ages, regardless of their living situation or socioeconomic status. If a person has scabies, they and anyone who comes into contact with them should all be treated at the same time.
Scabies mites can live on children and adults for 1-2 months. Mites only live for 72 hours when they are not on people. dependable source
Mites are generally killed quickly when treated with prescribed medications. The itching and rash caused by scabies may worsen at first, but the skin should heal within a few days.
Scabies symptoms appear differently depending on whether or not a person has previously been exposed to mites. It can take 4-8 weeks for symptoms to appear after being exposed to the scabies mite for the first time.
This period is noticeably shorter in later infestations, because the body’s immune system is quicker to react, which is typically within 1–4 days.
Some symptoms of scabies include:
- Thick crusts
The most common sites of infestation in adults and older children include:
- Between the fingers
- Around the fingernails
- The inner parts of the wrists
- Inner elbow
- Soles of the feet
- Breasts, particularly the areas around the nipples
- Male genitalia
- Shoulder blades
- Treatments and tips
10. Crabs (pubic lice)
Small, parasitic insects that feed on blood are known as pubic lice, crab lice, or crabs. They cause itching and red spots, and they spread quickly.
Lice are most commonly found on the skin in the genital area, but they can be found in any area of the body with coarse hair, such as the eyelashes, eyebrows, beard, moustache, and any hair on the back or abdomen.
Adult lice are gray-brown in colour and measure 1.1-1.8 millimeters in length. They may be discernible with the naked eye. The eggs and immature lice, on the other hand, are much smaller and may not be visible without a magnifying glass.
Lice are typically passed from person to person during sex, and healthcare professionals classify them as a sexually transmitted infection (STI). Close hugging and kissing, as well as sharing towels and other personal items, can help them spread.
Itching is the most common symptom of pubic lice, and it can begin as soon as 5 days after the first contact.
Someone may also notice:
- Skin with small red bumps or spots
- Blue spots on the thighs or lower abdomen, dark brown or black powder on the skin or in the underwear, or louse droppings on the skin or in the underwear
- The pubic region or any part of the body with hair, including the eyelashes, can be affected by symptoms.
What are the possible ways to prevent STDs?
Do you know some sexually transmitted infections can cause long-term harm to the sex organs? As a result, if you suspect you have one or are sexually active, you should get tested as soon as possible. As the saying goes, “Prevention is always better than cure”, so here are five ways you can help prevent yourself from contracting an STD in the first place.
Condoms are more than just a latex covering that can aid in birth control and family planning; they also protect you from sexually transmitted infections (STIs). For example, the herpes Virus is transmitted through skin contact, and Human Papilloma Virus follows the same path. As a result, the outer and inner genital linings must be protected. Also, if a person comes into contact with blisters, sores, or warts, they may contract the virus. As a result, men must use condoms to ensure safe sex.
Furthermore, do not discard the condom carelessly after use. Wrap it in a bag and seal the opening so no one can touch it. Otherwise, the virus may be transmitted to that person as well.
In order to maintain a healthy sexual life, it is recommended that the couple visits their doctors or sexual clinics twice a year. The STI test is usually quick and easy, and it is required because men are more likely than women to be exposed to these pathogens. In addition, the standard guidelines, instructions, and diagnostic tests ensure that everything is in check.
Most sexually transmitted infections have preventative measures in place to prevent infection spread. Even though using a condom is always the best preventive method, using medicines and vaccines provides an extra layer of protection. So for your information (FYI), There are HBV vaccines available. It keeps the person from becoming positive and the baby from becoming infected during pregnancy.
Say no to Multiple Sex Partners
Excess of anything is bad, and when it comes to sex, you should think about limiting yourself to a single-sex partner rather than embracing everyone. Having sex with only one person keeps you both sexually and emotionally fit.
Different diseases have no symptoms at the start of infection. As a result, you may not know if your partner can spread the infection.
Avoid Blood Contact & Transfer
Men who need to donate blood are more likely to contract an infection through blood transfer. Contact with contaminated needles or blood drops from an infected person can spread these diseases. As a result, it is prudent to use your shaving kit and undergo blood screening before transfusing.
If your sexual history and current signs and symptoms indicate that you have a sexually transmitted disease (STD) or STI, your doctor will perform a physical or pelvic exam to look for signs of infection, such as a rash, warts, or discharge.
Laboratory tests can determine the cause and detect any infections you may have.
Blood tests: Blood tests can confirm HIV or the later stages of syphilis.
Urine samples: Urine samples can be used to confirm some STIs.
Fluid tests: If you have open genital sores, your doctor may test fluid and sore samples to determine the type of infection.
Bacterial STDs or STIs are generally easier to treat. Viral infections can be treated, but they are not always cured.
If you have an STI while pregnant, getting treatment as soon as possible can prevent or reduce the risk of your baby becoming infected.
Depending on the infection, STI treatment usually consists of one of the following:
Many sexually transmitted bacterial and parasitic infections, such as gonorrhoea, syphilis, chlamydia, and trichomoniasis, can be cured with antibiotics, often in a single dose. Because the two infections frequently coexist, you will most likely be treated for both gonorrhoea and chlamydia at the same time.
Once you begin antibiotic treatment, you must finish the prescription. Inform your doctor if you believe you will be unable to take your medication as prescribed. There may be a shorter, simpler course of treatment available.
Furthermore, you should avoid sex for seven days after you’ve finished your antibiotic treatment and any sores have healed. Experts also recommend that women be retested in three months because there is a high risk of reinfection.
If you have herpes or HIV, you will be prescribed antiviral medication. If you combine daily suppressive therapy with a prescription antiviral drug, you will have fewer herpes recurrences. It is still possible to infect your partner with herpes.
Antiviral medications can prevent HIV infection for many years. However, you will still carry the virus and can transmit it, albeit at a lower risk.
The earlier you begin HIV treatment, the more effective it will be. It is possible to reduce the viral load in the blood to the point where it cannot be detected if you take your medications exactly as directed.
Sexually transmitted infections are widespread diseases but they can be prevented if we take a few necessary measures. On this week of sexually transmitted diseases let’s spread awareness about the severity of these infections and their precautionary measures.