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More bout STIs and PrEP

STIs, or Sexually Transmitted Infections are more pervasive in society given our increasingly accepting lifestyles. Yes, we should accept people for who they are and the different lifestyles that they choose, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't practice safety. The types of the sexually transmitted infections include:

  • Chlamydia
  • Cancroid
  • Crabs (lice found in the pubic hair)
  • Genital Herpes
  • Hepatitis B
  • Trichonomiasis
  • Hiv and Aids
  • Human Papillomavirus(HPV)
  • Molluscum contagiosum
  • Scabies
  • Syphilis
  • Gonorrhea
  • Among others…

They are all transmitted through various ways including sexual intercourse, untreated blood transfusion, kissing and sharing of infected objects.

When you notice any unusual occurrence on your genitals, you should visit the doctor for diagnosis. The diagnosis is carried in various ways which may include; blood test, urine test or even fluid test. But it is also advisable for everyone to visit the doctor regularly for screening.

The treatment for the STI’s is offered in hospitals and therefore feel free to visit when you have a problem. You should not be embarrassed to speak out to your doctor as earlier treatment is the best. Delayed treatment may lead to more complications which may include impotence.

Treatment is dependent on the causative of the disease. STI’s are generally caused by either a bacteria or a virus. The one’s caused by the bacteria are easier to treat while the one’s caused by a viral infection are hard to treat as they have no cure but medication is given to reduce their effects.

Option one treatment is done through the use of antibiotics. It is often prescribed as a single dose and is effective in curing most of the bacterial transmitted infections. These include; gonorrhea, syphilis, Trichonomiasis and chlamydia. Please note that once you start the treatment it is crucial that you follow it without missing and ensure that you finish your dose. Also you should abstain from sexual intercourse until you are completely healed.

The second mode of treatment is through the use of anti-viral drugs. This mode is used for treatment of virus transmitted infections such as herpes and HIV &AIDS. Their main aim is to lessen the effects of the ailment but the virus still resides in the body so it is still possible for one to transmit the infection.

STI/HIV/PrEP Checklist

  • There are plenty of methods to prevent HIV: People usually know about condoms, but there are plenty of others such as female condoms, PrEP, partnering with individuals with the same HIV status, among others. Employing these methods will reduce the risk of HIV, but not all of them are equally effective.
  • Remember condoms are not perfect: People stop using condoms for many reasons such as being drunk, assuming someone’s HIV status, a partner who refuses wearing condoms as an option, among others. Condoms break unexpectedly, and that’s why it’s better to have additional measures at hand.
  • PrEP is an available choice for most of us: PrEP has been known to prevent HIV transmission in gay, bi, heterosexual and trans men and women. There are not enough trials to know its effectiveness in people younger than 18 years old.
  • You can take PrEP during your period, with or without food: There’s no particular indication to use PrEP. As far as research points out, it is effective during your period and should not interfere if taken with food.
  • You can stop taking PrEP at any time: If you don’t have a sexual partner anymore, you can stop taking PrEP without any adverse effect. There are seasons of higher risk of HIV transmission, and it’s fine to take PrEP only when you need it.
  • PrEP does not prevent other STI, only HIV: PrEP only prevents the transmission of the HIV virus. It will not prevent gonorrhea, syphilis, and other types of sexually transmitted diseases. Therefore, it is advisable to take an extra measure if you’re on a high-risk sexual behavior.
  • Have a follow-up every 3 months: People under PrEP should not forget the importance of having a periodical check-up. The minimal follow-up period should be every 3 months, but under certain circumstances, your doctor may advise more frequent visits.

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STIs/HIV/PrEP FAQs