Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are common, especially among sexually active young adults. If you experience new or unusual symptoms or are at risk of contracting an STD, see the Hope & Esperanza Community Health Center team in Newark, New Jersey. Family nurse practitioners Virginia Atieh, FNP, Selande Charles, FNP, and their staff offer STD testing and treatment to restore your sexual health and reduce the risk of complications. Call the Hope & Esperanza Community Health Center office to schedule STD testing or book online today.

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What are STDs?

STDs, or sexually transmitted diseases, are diseases you contract from having oral, vaginal, or anal sexual intercourse with an infected person. Common STDs include:

  • Chlamydia
  • Gonorrhea
  • Herpes
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
  • Trichomoniasis 
  • Pubic lice (crabs)
  • Syphilis
  • Hepatitis

Some STDs are curable, while others require treatment to properly manage the disease and its symptoms. Your risk of contracting an STD increases if you’re sexually active with multiple partners, or you have sex with someone with multiple sexual partners.

What are the symptoms of STDs?

If you contract an STD, you may experience no symptoms at all — at least initially. You might also notice the following signs or symptoms:

  • Genital warts or bumps
  • Genital sores
  • Unusual vaginal or penis discharge
  • Pelvic pain in women
  • Menstrual changes in women
  • Changes in cervical cells in women
  • Changes in menstruation
  • Pain or burning with urination 
  • Fatigue
  • Pain during sexual intercourse

Any time you experience new or unusual symptoms, see the Hope & Esperanza Community Health Center team for an evaluation.

What is STD testing?

STD testing includes a variety of diagnostic procedures in which your family medicine specialist can detect the presence of specific sexually transmitted infections. Based on your age and risk factors, they may test you for multiple STDs during your appointment. 

What are the different types of STD testing?

The main types of STD tests available at Hope & Esperanza Community Health Center include:

  • Urine tests
  • Blood tests
  • Tissue swabs
  • Fluid analysis
  • Pap tests in women

Your family medicine specialist may take a tissue or fluid sample from the cervix in women, inside of the penis in men, or from open sores or blisters in the genital region to detect or rule out STDs.

What are my STD treatment options?

Depending on the type of STD you have, your specialist may recommend medications to cure the disease or reduce the severity and frequency of its symptoms. Not all STDs are curable, but medications can help you better manage symptoms and reduce the risk of disease transmission. 

Women might require a minor surgical procedure to remove precancerous cervical cells linked with HPV.

How can I reduce my risk of STDs?

Not having sex is the only certain way to prevent STDs. Practical ways to lower your risk of contracting them include using a condom each time you have sex or having sex with just one mutually monogamous partner who has tested negative for STDs. 

See the Hope & Esperanza Community Health Center team at the first sign of an STD to reduce the risk of complications and disease transmission. Call the office today and speak with a friendly staff member or book an appointment online.