Did you know that this week is National STI Awareness Week?



This article is all about YOU and your sexual health. I know the past few weeks have been shifting our priorities, but we shouldn’t forget about taking care of ourselves. Maintaining our health, including our sexual health, during this time is extremely important. If someone leaves a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) untreated, it can lead to health problems that make them more susceptible to other infections/pathogens that can attack the immune system.


Many people are unaware that they have an STI because they haven’t experienced any symptoms, they assume at every check-up they’re automatically tested for STIs, and some people are simply afraid of the unknown, so they decide against getting tested.


There’s no need to fear! ALL STIs are manageable.

Myth: “I’ll know if I have an STI because I’ll have symptoms, my body will tell me that something is wrong.”


In fact, many people with STIs are asymptomatic. This means that people CAN be carriers of STIs but may never experience any symptoms. This happens often, which is why we encourage people to get tested at least every 6 months.


Myth: “I get tested for STIs every time I get a check-up or visit a health care facility.”


Actually, most health care facilities DO NOT test for STIs unless you request it. Even if they say they’re testing you for STIs, you need to make sure they’re testing you for them all. Many places will ask you about your health history and determine which tests are most suitable for you depending on your physical symptoms and sexual activity. There are many ways healthcare providers test for STIs, so you can talk with your provider to see which method will work best for you.


Although getting tested can be intimidating for first-timers, there are many resources available to help navigate the process. (Provided at the end of the article)


Some Important Things to Know:

  • Anyone 12 and older can get tested and treated at any testing location in the state of Illinois without a parent’s consent.

  • Many locations provide free or low-cost testing, you’ll just have to call, ask about their testing procedures, and schedule an appointment

  • There are at-home testing kits available, if someone is unable to go to a health care facility for testing

  • Some facilities offer anonymous testing, which means you wouldn’t have to provide any of your identifying information to get tested


There’s no need to fear! ALL STIs are manageable.

Yes, ALL STIs are manageable when people adhere to the treatment plan informed by their health care team. Medicine has improved over the years, and there are many ways for people to stay safe and healthy.


Communication is one of the most essential tools needed throughout this process. Communicating your needs with your health care provider and communicating your emotions about testing with your partner(s) and ways to stay safe in the future are all very important factors when taking care of your sexual health.


Find Testing, Condoms, and PrEP Near You: https://gettested.cdc.gov

Resources for Testing:


• How Does STI Testing Work?

https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/stds-hiv-safer-sex/get-tested/how-does-std-testing-work


• What STI tests are recommended for you?

http://www.ashasexualhealth.org/stdsstis/get-tested/

https://www.cdc.gov/std/prevention/screeningreccs.htm


To Learn More About at Home Testing and Quarantine Love, Please Read Our Last Article

“A Guide to COVID-19 and A Healthy Sexual Lifestyle”



650 E. Algonquin Rd., Ste. 104
Schaumburg, IL 60173
(847) 496-5939
CPYD.coalition@gmail.com
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Funding provided in whole or in part to the Kenneth Young Center by the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and the Office of Adolescent Health (OAH).