Special: Help for STDs

Posted: August 20, 2011 in Diseases, Other Writers, Specials
Tags: , , , , , ,

“I’ll never forget sitting in the counseling room with her. As a crisis pregnancy counselor, I volunteered weekly to administer free pregnancy tests and provide confidential counsel to people in need. Sadly, I would sit with clients as young as twelve years old.

This particular client didn’t seem too concerned about whether her test was positive or negative. As the timer for the pregnancy test counted down, her mind was clearly elsewhere.

“What are you thinking?,” I asked.

“I know I got herpes from my last partner. This is going to change everything.”

Sorrow overwhelmed her and anger began to surface.

Like many in our society, she bought into the “safe sex” lie and falsely trusted a piece of latex.  However, latex doesn’t cover the entire genital region.  Since herpes is a skin to skin contact disease, she was still infected and could never turn back.  

Herpes is a viral STD. There is no cure.

There are two classes of STDs- viral and bacterial.  Once a person acquires a viral STD, it is for life.  There may be medication to treat the symptoms, but they cannot eradicate the disease.  Bacterial STDs, on the other hand, are curable.  If a person sees their physician and tests positive for one of these diseases, antibiotics are available to wipe it out.  Unfortunately, many teenagers are having genital contact and failing to be tested.

But did you know the following?

§                     STDs are the most common diseases in America next to the common cold and flu.  Source:  http://humanlifeservices.org/teens.htm

§                     One in four teens are already infected with at least one STD.  Source:  http://std-gov.org

§                     One in two sexually active youth will contract an STD by age 25.  Source:   http://www.ashastd.org/pdfs/ASHA_05.final.pdf

§                     One in five American’s age 12 and over has genital herpes, a virus for which they can only treat symptoms.  Source:  http://www.cdc.gov/std/Herpes/STDFact-Herpes.htm#common

§                     At least 50% of sexually active men and women acquire genital HPV infection at some point in their lives. Sadly, for some girls this leads to premature hysterectomies and even death.  Source: http://www.cdc.gov/std/HPV/STDFact-HPV.htm#howget

§                     15% of all infertile American women are infertile because of tubal damage caused by an STD (Chlamydia or gonorrhea).  Source:  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18076491/ns/health-sexual_health/.

§                     To date, there is no evidence that consistent use of condoms during oral sex reduces your chance of getting most STIs.  Source:  http://www.medinstitute.org/public/92.cfm

§                     Hormonal birth control, while preventing pregnancy, can dramatically increase a girl’s chance of STD infection.  Source: http://www.global-sisterhood-network.org/content/view/218/59/

§                     80% of people infected with an STD have no symptoms.  Source: http://www.physiciansforlife.org/content/view/206/37/

Obviously teens aren’t infecting each other intentionally, but the lack of symptoms in 4 out of 5 people is allowing for disease to spread like wildfire. 

And, unlike a boy who may walk away from sexual contact without permanent damage, girls’ bodies were created with an open sexual system, placing them at risk for internal damage that forever affects their future.  Sadly, girls will pay a higher price every time. 

Sexually transmitted diseases are SERIOUS.    

Pam Stenzel and I want to make sure that you are educated and empowered to make healthy relationship choices.  To help you, we’ve written the book NOBODY TOLD ME.  This book is perfect for every student (12 and up).  If you have abstained, this book will offer a window into the heart of your peers, provide answers to difficult questions you still might have (and be afraid to ask), strengthen you to remain pure until marriage, and offer suggestions to help you live that out.  If you have made mistakes, this book will give you the opportunity to hear stories of young people struggling right along with you, but within that commonality our words will provide clarity where there was confusion, hope where there was pain, understanding that your past choices don’t have to define your future ones, and practical steps to redeeming your future.

Please don’t pass this by. We don’t want you to have to say to God, your parents, a physician, or a future spouse, “Nobody told me. I didn’t know.” 

Pam’s website – www.pamstenzel.com

Melissa’s website – http://melissanesdahl.blogspot.com/

Fan Page for the book – http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Nobody-Told-Me/119424511453919

(This post was written by Melissa Nesdahl, co-author of Nobody Told Me. Nobody wants to talk about STDs, but if you or someone you love has one, contact Melissa or Pam at their websites.)

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