"It can't happen to me!"

Yes, it can if you are sexually active.  You can get some STD's more than once, and more than one at a time.  They are transmitted mostly by sexual contact, but other means of transmission are possible.  Please visit our STD information page to learn more about how various STD are spread.

Some STD's have symptoms that itch or hurt.  With others you might not even know you are infected unless you are tested, or someone you had sex with never tells you that he or she was infected.  Get regular medical check-ups if you are sexually active.  Demand an STD exam, since they are not necessarily part of a routine physical.

It doesn't have to happen to you!

There are many ways you can prevent getting an STD:

  1. Don't have sex.  It's the best way to protect yourself from the AIDS virus or other STD's.  Abstinence, as difficult as it may seem, will keep you from getting infected.
  2. Re-think your attitude about having sex.  Be completely honest with your partner about past sexual experiences.  Have sexual relationships with people you feel comfortable with and whose sexual past is not a mystery to you.  Do not feel pressured into having sex unless you are comfortable and trust your partner.  Try not to assume anything!  It is better to be safe than sorry.
  3. If you do have sex, use condoms or latex gloves with your partner(s).  These products can limit your chances of contracting many STD's and greatly reduce your risk of getting the HIV virus.  STD's transmitted by skin contact can only be contained to the area protected with condoms or latex gloves.
  4. Look before you love.  Any sore, rash or discharge your lover has may be dangerous to your health.  Be observant.  If your lover says "Don't worry" or "Trust me", ask them politely what they mean.  Communication will go a long way to keep you safe, and build trust in your relationship.
  5. If you have an STD, tell your partner(s).  Refrain from having sex until a medical professional says you are alright.  You and your partner must be treated at the same time to prevent re-infecting each other.  Each STD has a different level of curability.
  6. If you notice a blister, swelling or sore in your genital region - see a medical professional immediately.  It could be serious, and a professional can tell if it's an STD and prescribe treatment.  The BESTD clinic can treat most STD's, so please use our contact page to ask us any questions or get more information.
  7. Know the Risks involving oral sex.  It is a common misconception that oral sex is safer than other forms of sexual activity, but there is a risk involved.

Some of the information provided on this page has been adopted from a pamphlet published
by Private Line of Kenilworth, IL.  © March 1996.  847-251-5893