STI Awareness Day – CUSHAG Blog – Jonny Crisp

 

January the 14th is national STI day across the nation. One of the most renowned dates on the calendar…

How on earth did they decide the 14th of January should be a day dedicated to STI’s you may ask?

It isn’t just a coincidence that the day lies exactly 2 weeks after New Year’s Eve. The most accurate results involving testing for chlamydia, one of the most common STI’s in the UK, can be obtained around 14 days after sexual intercourse. When considering a lot of the best/possibly worst decisions are made under the influence of alcohol…. Well, it’s obvious why it falls on this date.

Sexual Transmitted Infection (STI) – “Any kind of bacterial or viral infection that can be passed on through unprotected sexual contact” Brooks Wellbeing 2016.

The most common STI’s encountered include chlamydia, genital warts, genital herpes, gonorrhea, and syphilis.

Having a day dedicated to STI awareness helps to reduce the stigma associated with sexual health tests as well as educates sexually active individuals on the common signs of the infections. Better2Know is a nationwide campaign aimed at supporting and encouraging people to get tested and treated to help prevent the spread of STI’s. They provide advice on local clinic locations, common symptoms, and provide a home testing set which can be used and sent back with a result. Projects like this are vital to help gain the support of the government and funding bodies, to provide services for local areas.

Below is a list of common STI’s and some of their associated symptoms:

Chlamydia:

  • Discharge from the penis/vagina
  • Pain during urination
  • Bleeding during/after sex
  • Abdominal pain

Genital Warts:

  • For women, warts in or around the vagina, around the anus or inner thigh
  • For men, warts on the penis, scrotum, around the anus or inner thigh
  • Warts may be associated with bleeding and irritation

Genital Herpes:

  • Blisters around the genitals
  • Discharge from the penis/vagina
  • Pain between urinating
  • Flu-like symptoms

Gonorrhea:

  • Many experience no symptoms at all
  • Green/yellow discharge from the penis/vagina
  • Pain when urinating

With an estimated only 35% of individuals using condoms during sexual intercourse within the UK, STI’s are spreading rapidly through populations, particularly the young. There could not be better time to raise awareness of sexual health and its importance in everyday life! There are loads of easy and free ways as students that we can limit the risk of infection – for example:

Visit CUSHAG C-Card events – FREE DUREX CONDOMS, LUBES AND DENTAL DAMS!

Visit CUSHAG dispensers in Y Plas!

Visit one of Cardiff’s many Sexual Health Clinics – see via the link below:

http://www.cardiffandvaleuhb.wales.nhs.uk/sexual-health

If you have any concerns about your sexual health make sure you visit your GP or consult the NHS website.

Reference

https://www.better2know.co.uk/blog/january-14th-is-sti-awareness-day/

https://www.brook.org.uk/your-life/category/stis

http://www.fpa.org.uk/factsheets/teenagers-sexual-health-behaviour#T0Os

http://cushag.com/

http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Sexualhealthtopics/Pages/Sexual-health-hub.aspx

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