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STD Awareness Month

April 13, 2016

During the month of April, the Florida Department of Health in Orange County (DOH-Orange) recognizes Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) Awareness Month by encouraging people to take three simple actions: Talk, Test, and Treat, to avoid the negative health consequences and to reduce the overall burden of STDs. Individuals can speak openly about prevention, and the signs and symptoms to their healthcare providers and partners, and learn where they can get tested and seek appropriate treatment.

“STD testing is very important. Most STDs are easily diagnosed and treated, but they often have no symptoms and go undetected. When not found or treated, the disease continues to spread and can impact the health of others,” said Dr. Kevin M Sherin, director of the Florida Department of Health in Orange County.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases can threaten immediate and long-term health and well-being. Untreated STDs can lead to reproductive complications such as infertility (inability to get pregnant) and ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the womb). They can also increase a person's risk for getting and giving HIV.

Nationally, in 2014 Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Syphilis all increased. In Florida, from 2013 to 2014, total cases of Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Syphilis increased from 103,566 to 105,461 cases. In Orange County, from 2013 to 2014, total cases of Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Syphilis increased from 8,923 to 9,154 cases.

STDs are preventable. Anyone sexually active should talk to their partner and a doctor about risk factors, get tested, and if necessary, get treated to avoid additional health problems.  For more information on STD testing and treatment, visit  www.cdc.gov/Features/STDAwareness/ .