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If left untreated, STIs can lead to a sexually transmitted disease (STD).A disease means the infection is actually causing the person to feel sick or experience symptoms.
It is easier to prevent most STIs than it is to treat an STD. During vaginal, oral or anal sex, people exchange bodily fluids with each other. A person can catch an STI from fingers and objects if they have been touched by genitals carrying an STI. These STIs do not become a problem until they start growing.Other STIs, like herpes and warts, can spread through skin-to-skin contact.You cannot tell if someone has an STI just by looking at them There is no way to tell if someone is infected by looking at them. There are many different types of STIs, each with its own symptoms.Some people may have symptoms around their genitals, but some won’t. Some STIs may cause:- sores, warts, lumps or rashes anywhere in the genital or anal area- severe itchiness in the genital or anal area- abnormal fluid releasing from the penis or vagina- pain or discomfort during sex or urination- persistent diarrhea- sore throat after oral sex with an infected person A person can be infected with an STI without knowing it.Talking about sex with your teen is a conversation most parents may find difficult to start.Opening up the lines of communication is an opportunity to discuss the importance of safe sex.
Some teens may have their own ideas about what 'safe' means, which can lead to misconceptions.
It's better the information comes from an informed source (like you) to help put things into context.
This way your teen can take proactive steps to avoid a sexually transmitted infection (STI).
Starting that conversation means equipping yourself with accurate, up to date information on STIs.
Here are some common questions about STIs your teen may want to know. A sexually transmitted infection (STI) is a virus, bacteria, fungus, or parasite that has the potential to cause infection.
Someone with an STI will not always feel sick or experience symptoms right away.