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Are you currently in or considering a monogamous relationship? Although the conversation of STD screening is not the most comfortable, it must be addressed. I recommend that all monogamous couples receive STD screening prior to the beginning of a physical relationship. According to the American Sexual Health Association, over half of the US population will have an STD at some point in their life. Despite the prevalence of STD’s, fewer than one third of US physicians routinely screen patients.

Many sexually active adults neglect to take STD tests due to the erroneous belief that such diseases are restricted only to those with many sexual partners. This is a potentially life-threatening myth!

Other people begin sexual relationships without first testing for STD’s. They decide not to ever test for STD’s because they assume that if they were infected, they would already notice symptoms. This is an incredibly dangerous assumption because most STD’s have either no noticeable symptoms, or can remain asymptomatic for months or even years. Even something as virulent as HIV can be asymptomatic for several years.

Detection of STD’s is key for sexual health. Several STD’s when left untreated can result in Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, a condition that can lead to infertility in women. STD infection rates are only on the rise. If this trajectory is unchanged, the CDC estimates that nearly half of all adults will have genital herpes by 2025.

Before entering into a monogamous sexual relationship, it is vital to your health that you have yourself and your partner tested for STD’s before having unprotected sex in order to ensure the safe exploration of your intimacy.