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How Commong Is It For Teens To Have STDs?

Published: June 16, 2014
Dear How Commong Is It For Teens To Have STDs?,

How common is it for teens to have STDs?


Dear How Commong Is It For Teens To Have STDs?,

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Office of Adolescent Health:

  • Adolescents ages 15-24 account for nearly half of the 20 million new cases of STDs each year.
  • Today, 4 in 10 sexually active girls have had an STD that can cause infertility and even death.
  • Chlamydia rates are highest among young people ages 15-24. Rates are higher among women than men.
  • Though rates of HIV are very low among teens, males make up more than two-thirds of HIV diagnoses among 13-19 year olds.

The Office of Adolescent Health also points out the following:

  • STDs often have no obvious sign or physical symptom, so regular screenings are critical.
  • The most effective way to prevent STDs is to abstain from sexual activity.
  • If teens are having sex, they should be using a condom correctly and with every sexual act.

If you have questions about preventing the transmission of STDs or about testing or treatment, speak to your primary care physician, gynecologist or adolescent medicine specialist. If you don't have a doctor and live in northern New Jersey, you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center for Health at 973-971-5199 for an appointment with an adolescent medicine specialist or contact your local teen health center or Planned Parenthood. You can also contact your insurance company for a list of in-network providers.

The Office of Adolescent Health lists the following resources for adolescent STD services:

  • Federally funded Title X family planning clinics offer low-cost STD testing and contraceptive services for all who want and need them. By law, priority is given to persons from low-income families.  Adolescents and others can find a Title X funded clinic by zip code.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also has a locator service that helps visitors search for testing centers where they can receive STD and HIV testing services, as well as vaccines for Hepatitis B and HPV.

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