July 25, 2024


An STD may also be called a sexually transmitted infection (STI) or venereal disease (VD). A person can contract an STD by having unprotected vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has an STD.

That doesn’t mean sex is the only way STDs are transmitted. Depending on the specific STD, infections may also be transmitted through sharing needles and breastfeeding.

Sexually transmitted diseases in women.

In many cases, STDs don’t cause noticeable symptoms. When they do, common STD symptoms in women include:

  • pain or discomfort during sex or urination
  • sores, bumps, or rashes on or around the vagina, anus, buttocks, thighs, or mouth
  • unusual discharge or bleeding from the vagina
  • itchiness in or around the vagina

Types of STDs

  • Chlamydia
  • HPV (human papillomavirus)
  • Syphilis
  • HIV
  • Gonorrhoea
  • Pubic lice (‘crabs’)
  • Trichomoniasis
  • Herpes

Pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases

It’s possible for pregnant women to transmit STDs to the fetus during pregnancy or newborn during childbirth. If you test positive for one or more STDs while pregnant, your doctor might prescribe antibiotics, antiviral medications, or other treatments.

STDs Treatments

The recommended treatment for STDs varies, depending on what STD you have. It’s very important that you and your sexual partner be successfully treated for STDs before resuming sexual activity. Otherwise, you can pass an infection back and forth between you.

How to use condoms correctly

  • Check the expiration date.
  • Make sure the package has an air bubble, which shows it hasn’t been punctured.
  • Put the condom on correctly.
  • For external condoms, always leave room at the tip and unroll the condom onto the penis.
  • Use condom-safe lubricant, avoiding oil-based lubes with latex condoms.
  • Hold onto the condom after sex, so it doesn’t slip.
  • Dispose of the condom properly.
  • Never remove a condom and try to put it on again.
  • Never reuse a condom.

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