The second full week of April is STD Awareness Week! STDs are sexually transmitted diseases, also referred to as sexually transmitted infections (STIs). This is a time to call attention to STDs; reduce stigma, fear and discrimination against people living with them; and sure everyone has the tools needed to prevent, test for, and treat STDs. According to the CDC, one in five people in the United States had an STI in 2018 (nearly half from young people ages 15-24), which cost the American health care system nearly $16 billion alone.
According to Timothy P. Harrison, Deputy Director for Strategic Initiatives and Senior Policy Advisor, Office of Infectious Disease and HIV/AIDS Policy, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, “For years, the U.S. has been battling steep, sustained increases in STDs,” which is why it is so important to raise awareness about STDs to protect your health, the health of your partners, and the health of your community. The CDC offers these guidelines and resources to make sexual health intentional:
- Prepare Before You’re There – Research shows that people may not believe they are at risk for STIs, even if they’re engaging in risky behavior.
- You can take this quick and easy online quiz to see if you’re at risk for an STI.
- After taking the quiz, you can access these resources to help you make a game plan to be intentional about your sexual health.
- GYT: Get Yourself Tested – getting tested can boost your confidence and peace of mind about your sexual health.
We wanted to highlight some resources available at the library that focus on STDs and sexual health. Stop by and check one out, or place a hold on any of these titles by following the corresponding link:
- Strange bedfellows : adventures in the science, history, and surprising secrets of STDs by Ina Park
- Fast facts about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) : a nurse’s guide to expert patient care edited by Meredith Scannell
- 100 questions & answers about HIV and AIDS by Paul E. Sax
- No shame : real talk with your kids about sex, self-confidence, and healthy relationships by Dr. Lea Lis, The Shameless Psychiatrist