If you are sexually active, even if you’re only with one partner, there’s a chance you can have an STD (sexually transmitted disease). It’s important to get tested so you can understand your treatment options and begin treatment right away, if it’s available.
We provide STD/STI information at our clinic to help you understand next steps and your options. We’ll make referrals for where to go for affordable testing and treatment. In addition, we’ll answer any questions and concerns you may have.
What’s the difference between and STD and STI?
While these two terms are often used interchangeably, they technically are different.
Having an STI, or sexually transmitted infection, means the person is infected but it has not yet turned into a disease (STD). For example, if a person has chlamydia or gonorrhea, they have an infection, but not a disease unless one of those turns into pelvic inflammatory disease.
You may be wondering what the difference is between an infection and disease. An infection happens before turning into a disease. This means, all STDs start out as STIs. This is why, generally, people use the two terms interchangeably.
What should I do first?
If you haven’t been tested in awhile or have never been tested, you should plan to do so as soon as possible. You don’t need to panic or worry, just be informed because this is an important aspect of your health. It’s quick and easy to get your results.
It’s also important for you to be tested for the sake of your partner’s health as well. If you do have an STI or STD, you’ll need to let them know so they can be tested as well.
If you are tested and the test comes back positive, the medical professional who administers the test will be able to provide information about treatment and next steps. Don’t put testing off. Many are treatable, but not all sexual diseases are curable. The sooner you understand what you’re dealing with, the sooner you’ll be back on track to a healthier you.