Other STD FAQs:
Questions About STD Symptoms
- What are the Incubation Periods of Common STDs?
You just had sex with a new partner, and now you're starting to itch. Are you just paranoid? Or could you have picked up an STD. Learn how quickly symptoms do, and don't, appear for some of the most common STDs.
- Do I Have an STD?
Learning the incubation periods, and symptoms, of STDs are all well and good, but how do you know if you have one? This is the most common question I'm asked on the forums. Learn why it's hard to give you an answer.
- What is the Difference Between a Cold Sore, a Canker Sore, and a Chancre?
A lot of people get confused about the difference between a cold sore and a canker sore, and don't know which are infectious and which are not. Still others hear "canker" and "chancre" and think they're the same thing! Here's a quick guide to the three types of sores.
Questions About STD Testing
- What are the Current STD Screening Recommendations?
When you go to the doctor for your annual exam, what STDs should you be screened for? It's helpful for you to know, because sometimes your doctor doesn't.
- Why Do I Need a Pap Smear to Get Oral Contraceptive Pills?
Some women get really annoyed when their doctor requires them to get a Pap Smear before they're allowed to pick up their pills, but there's a very good reason. Pap smears may be unpleasant, but getting them can save your life.
- Should I Get a Pap Smear or an HPV Test?
With all the news about HPV and cervical cancer, some women wonder why they still need to get Pap smears. Need some help understanding why your doctor is recommending a Pap smear, an HPV test, or both? Here's the scoop (the scrape?)!
- What Does it Mean When My Test Results are Inconsistent?
It can be hard to hear that you've tested positive for an STD, but it can be even harder to hear that your doctor isn't sure. Sometimes one test for an STD will come up positive and another will come up negative. Why does this happen, and how can you understand what the inconsistent test results mean?
- What is Asymptomatic Shedding?
Often people think that if they don't show signs of being infected with herpes, or another STD, they can't transmit it to their partner. They're wrong.
- Can Fingering Give me an STD? A lot of people want to know whether fingering can transmit disease. It's hard to give them a concrete answer.
- Do You Practice What You Preach About Negotiating Safer Sex?
People often ask me if I really do all the things I tell other people to do when I'm thinking about having sex with a new partner. The answer is yes, although I freely admit that it isn't always easy.
- What is Contact Tracing?
The nice thing about STDs is that you generally have a pretty good idea who you got them from and who you might have given them to. Contact tracing is a tool that allows doctors to try and stamp out STDs by investigating sexual networks.
- What is a Microbicide?
There aren't a lot of contraceptive options that also protect against STDs. Because of that, many researchers are focused on developing these novel types of contraceptive/sexual lubricant that can stop diseases before they start.
- How Do STDs Increase HIV Risk?
It's bad enough that you have a sexually transmitted disease, but did you know that most STDs also increase your risk of getting HIV? Learn how STD infections make it easier for HIV to get under your skin.
Teens & STDs
- I told my kid about the birds and the bees. Now I'm done, right?
If you want your teenager to feel comfortable talking with you about sex, then a quick overview of the birds and the bees isn't enough. The secret to a good sex talk is repetition.
- Why are Young Women More Susceptible to Cervical STD Infections?
Chlamydia and gonorrhea aren't only more common in young women because young women are more sexually active. They're also more common, because a quirk of female biology leaves the young more susceptible to cervical infections.
- Is Sex With a Virgin Safe?
Some people assume that sex with a virgin is automatically safe. Here's why they're wrong.
- What is the Hymen?
Some people are obsessed with female virginity. They talk about the "maidenhead" or "popping a girls cherry," but that tells me that they have no idea what the hymen actually is.
STDs in General
- What Does it Mean for a Disease or Condition to be "Socially Stigmatized?"
STDs are diseases just like any other, but many people feel like being diagnosed with them makes them somehow "dirty" or "bad." That's not true, and STDs aren't the only diseases that are socially stigmatized...
- What is the Difference Between Sexually Associated and Sexually Transmitted Diseases?
Scientists love their terminology, and get very cranky when it's not used in the right way. Therefore, when a disease has been shown to be associated with sexual activity, but there's no clear method of sexual transmission, researchers are leery of calling it an STD.
- What is the Tuskegee Syphilis Study?
The Tuskegee syphilis study is a black mark on the history of American medical research. Today, it's used as an example of social, and scientific, injustice in action.
- How Do Scientists Know if People in their Studies are Telling The Truth?
When you're doing a research study, you want your information to be as accurate as possible. Still, it can be difficult to get clear answers, particularly about sensitive issues about sex...
- What is a Validated Instrument?
A validated instrument is a question, or series of questions, that has been shown to get accurate answers, where accuracy is defined as people actually answering the same questions that scientists think they're asking. It sounds simple, but it isn't.
- What is the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System?
When a vaccine is released for use in the general public, it's important for the government to be able to track any side effects to see if it might be more dangerous than early testing showed. The VAERS system, allows them to do just that.