April is STD Awareness Month, in an effort to bring attention across America to the prevention, testing, and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Sexually transmitted disease is a societal concern that if not addressed nationally, it can have a greater impact for individuals that can lead to other medical and mental health concerns.
With the increase of STDs on the rise, it is imperative that people have a clear understanding about the different diseases, measures needed to prevent contracting a STD, and becoming knowledgeable about the STDs that are curable and treatable. Studies have shown that an individual’s mental health affects one’s ability to prevent and control the spread of STDs.
According to the MAYO Clinic “women with STDs experience frustration, anxiety, anger, fear of rejection, isolation, guilt, embarrassment, shame and feelings of physical filth or contamination. These negative psychological effects are potentially more important than the medical effects of the disease.”
Certain STDs if left untreated can cause mental illness and even death. Taking charge of your sexual health is important. So, if you are sexually active, you are encouraged to get tested for STDs. Knowing your status is better than not knowing all.
Written by therapist – Kim Homes