What is an STD?
Sexually Transmitted Diseases are a special type of infection that is caused by specific pathogens like bacteria, viruses, and parasites. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), there are nearly 1 million new cases of STDs recorded each day. However, many of the cases go undiagnosed and unreported, thus the estimate can be quite higher than that. Some STDs can be treated and some are incurable and you gotta live with it forever – one such STD is HIV. Even for the treatable STDs, they need to be diagnosed and cured as soon as possible. If time lapses, then you can experience severe health consequences in the long run.
Causes of STD
Sexually Transmitted Diseases are known for their transmission mode and the very name was coined because of it. Most of the STDs spread via sexual contact with an infected person – including oral, vaginal, and anal sex. Some people might think STDs cannot be spread just by having oral sex. However, that is not true. The oral cavity actually makes it easier for viruses and bacteria to penetrate into your body and cause an infection.
Common Types of STDs in the US
There are more than a dozen types of STDs that are prevalent across the globe and in the United States. However, not all of them are highly infectious and/or can be fatal. Most of them are not a common issue infecting many people in the first place. However, there are certain types of STDs that are highly contagious, taking a major toll, and can be deadly too. Following are some of the most commonly known STDs in the US –
Chlamydia Trachomatis bacteria that cause Chlamydia in men and women. This type of STD can be cured if diagnosed at the right stage, yet it can leave long-term consequences if they are not treated early Symptoms of Chlamydia include abnormal genital discharge, urge to urinate, and pain while urinating. Read more about Chlamydia here.
Neisseria Gonorrhea is another type of bacteria that causes Gonorrhea. This STD also has a name called “the clap”. Gonorrhea imitates similar symptoms like Chlamydia such as – genital discharge, urge to urinate, and fever. This makes it harder to diagnose which STD you have without testing. CDC recommends people get screened for Gonorrhea if they have Chlamydia and vice versa. Gonorrhea can be cured by taking antibiotics at the right time.
HIV is a type of viral STD that we all know about. HIV is highly popular due to its nature of incurability and fatality as it leads to AIDS. Unlike the previous two STDs, HIV is completely different as it is caused by a virus and progresses slowly to the end-stage. Symptoms vary depending on the stage in which you are in. The virus primarily targets your CD4 immune cells and attacks them until there are no more immune cells left in your body. AIDS is the final stage of HIV where you are no longer immune and can expect a short life.
Herpes is another type of STD caused by a virus called Herpes Simplex Virus that causes severe damage if not addressed earliest. Symptoms of Herpes include flu-like symptoms such as swollen glands, fever, chills, sore throat, and headache. Herpes can also cause sores on your skin particularly around the genitals or oral area. There’s no cure for herpes but the virus can be suppressed by taking antiretroviral therapy drugs.
Treponema Pallidum bacteria is the pathogen behind Syphilis infection. Syphilis is more like HIV that progresses slowly in multiple stages. Long-term syphilis can lead to neurological and muscular disorders, blindness, deafness, and even paralysis. Read more about symptoms of Syphilis in various stages here.
Above are the common types of STDs in the US. If you suspect that you have been exposed to any of the STDs, get tested for STDs as soon as possible. The sooner you get treated, the better it is to recover quickly.
How much does STD Testing cost in the US?
STD testing cost ranges between $24 and $444 in different labs and facilities across the U.S. No prior appointment is required. Compare the price, order your test online and visit the nearest lab during lab business hours or shop the STD home testing kit. Complete the procedure and get the results in your email in 2 to 3 business days.
How much does STD Testing cost without insurance?
STD testing can be done in two stages. First, screening tests are done to check the presence of microorganisms in the body that cause STDs. If the screening test results are positive, additional tests will be performed to identify the exact stage of the infection.
Many health insurance policies in the US do not cover the screening tests of STDs. But they might cover the cost of the additional tests performed. STD testing can be done at zero-cost or at a very low cost if the insurance company reimburses you.
Our STD testing providers offer screening tests for all sexually transmitted diseases. Even though our STD testing providers do not accept insurance, they can provide you with the itemized receipt containing all the details which are necessary for insurance reimbursement purposes.
STD positive treatment
Having suspected the symptoms and after giving your sample for an STD, if it comes back positive the first thing that you need to do it: do not fret. Due to recent advancements in medicines, there are treatment methods for almost all of the STD types. No matter in which stage you are in, STDs can be treated if you diagnose them at the right time. Bacteria causing STDs like Gonorrhea and Chlamydia can be treated with the help of antibiotics prescribed by your physician. In the case of testing positive for a viral STD like HIV or Herpes, there is no complete cure. However, your physician may prescribe anti-retroviral therapy drugs to help you slow down the virus activity and to make the symptoms disappear.
Also, make sure not involve in sexual intercourse and lead a healthy life like taking more fiber-rich foods and avoiding alcohol and tobacco as they suppress your immune system making you more vulnerable to diseases.