Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) are infections that can be passed between two people through sexual contact. There are lots of different types of STIs - some can be cured and will go away after simple treatment such as antibiotics. Other STIs cannot be cured but can be treated, as long as they are diagnosed through STI screening or testing.
Unfortunately, young people are the most likely to become infected with an STI. Nearly 10% of all young people will get an STI at some point before they are 25, and lots of them will find they have become re-infected (caught it again) within a year.
It is really important that you know about STIs and how you can protect yourself and your partner, so that you can focus on the pleasurable aspects of sex and not worry as much about putting yourself at risk.
Using condoms everytime you have sex and getting regularly tested for STIs is the best way to take care of your sexual health and make sure that you are protected against STIs.
There are more than 25 STIs. Some STIs that you may have heard of are Chlamydia, Genital Warts, Herpes, Gonorrhoea, NSU (Non-specific Urethritis), Syphilis, HIV, Hepatitis (A, B and C), TV (Trichomonas Vaginalis), Pubic Lice, and Scabies.
For more information on the specific infections, go to the STI section of the NHS website.
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