Are you young? Are you a women? Do you have sex? Awesome! If you’re not sufficiently terrified of life already as a youthful female, hold onto your boobs: you’re also more likely to get an STD that most other people! Who has an STD, you ask? Why, millions and millions of people. Happy Valentine’s Day, dudes.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 19.7 million infections are diagnosed annually in the United States, costing the $16 billion to treat each year. Nearly half of all 110 million cases total are people aged 15 to 24. Apparently, young people have always had more STDs than anybody else as we tend to not “have good insurance or difficulties accessing care.”
“We’ve seen a disproportionate burden for quite a while,” said CDC epidemiologist. “Young women in particular are at greater risk.”
The most costly are HPV, which can cause tumors, and HIV, which case lifelong effects. If you’re like me, you assumed that HPV rates had gone down now that people are utilizing the vaccine, but no: the use of preventative vaccines is actually low, while HPV-related cancers has gone up. Good job, guys (actually, this statement is aimed at myself, as I have yet to get the damn vaccine myself…).
Anyway, it’s Valentine’s Day. Use protection, use care and try not to get a damn STD today, or any day. Sex is just as fun! Science says so.
Photo: Tomi Tapio / Flickr