One of the largest topics on the minds of college students is sex. College is a time of independence and exploration. For many students, that includes a sex, often with a variety of partners. This new sexual freedom is leading to an epidemic among young adults…that of STDs. In fact, a recent study showed that 25% of college students have had, or currently have an STD. Furthermore, 2/3 of all people who have an STD are in college. What’s even scarier is the fact that it is impossible to tell who is and who is not affected. Even if your partner assures you that they are safe, many people who are infected with STDs are not aware of their condition immediately. As such, it is vital that you take every precaution to protect yourself and others from this growing threat.
About STDs and College Students
There are generally two classes of STDs; viral and bacterial. Viral STDs include such diseases as HIV, hepatitis, genital warts, and herpes. These infections are serious and can be treated, but never cured. Many people who are carrying these diseases have no symptoms and will often unknowingly spread the disease to others. Bacterial STDS include diseases like syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and others. Although these can also go undetected for a certain period, they are more likely to show symptoms and can usually be cured with a round of antibiotics.
If you are a college student, there are some statistics of which you need to be aware before you spread your sexual wings. While around a quarter of college students have an STD, many still do not use condoms regularly. According to a survey, only 54% of college students use condoms regularly during vaginal intercourse and even fewer use them for other sexual activity (29% for anal intercourse and 4% for oral sex).
With these statistics, it is little wonder that STDs among college students are reaching epidemic proportions. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) predicts that there will be over 9 million new cases of STDs among college students each year. A large number of these new infections will involve drinking. Many college students are notorious for drinking and partying but this can be even more dangerous than you think. Over 45% of college students who have engaged in sex after drinking report that using condoms or other contraception never entered their minds and many more say they would have had unprotected sex even if a condom had been available.
While your college years should be a time of new experiences, you definitely don’t want your experiences to include catching an STD. Even though abstinence is the only perfect way to protect yourself, that is not a realistic goal for many. If you are going to engage in sexual activity, make sure you use a condom every time, without exception. Also get an STD screening at least once a year, just to be sure you haven’t been infected. These simple steps can be all it takes to protect yourself and to ensure that you do not contribute to this growing problem.
About the Author: Ben T. is a writer for AspiringNurse.com. To learn and understand how to become a nurse practitioner, you should look at the different online nurse practitioner programs to see which programs would be best for you. This article was written by a guest author. Would you like to write for us?