Did you know that nearly 20 million new sexually transmitted infections (STIs) occur in the US every year? Or that half of those infected are between the ages of 15 and 24?
When you think about your potential risk of exposure to STIs, you may be thinking only of your sexual partners. But did you know that when you have sex, you are exposed to all the people that your sex partners had sex with, AND all the people they had sex with? If any one of them was infected, you are at risk.
You may have seen our booths at the Virginia Tech Gobblerfest or the Radford University Wellness Fair with our “What’s Your Number?” display. If you didn’t stop to talk to us about it, you may have wondered what that was about. This is it.
Many people with an STI don’t know that they have an infection because they may not have symptoms, as symptoms sometimes do not show up for several weeks or at all. Thus they may be unintentionally spreading the infection to new partners, or the infection may be causing damage to their reproductive system. In fact, according to the CDC, undiagnosed STIs cause an estimated 24,000 women to become infertile each year. Certain STIs, when undiagnosed and untreated, can cause serious health problems.
That’s why it’s so important to get testing and treatment if you’re at risk. Valley Women’s Clinic offers free and confidential STI testing for chlamydia and gonorrhea, two of the most common STIs. We will provide you with referrals for treatment if your test comes back positive. We also offer free pregnancy testing. All of our services are free and confidential.