Sexually transmitted diseases or STDs can have a big impact on your health and fertility if they go untreated. However, they can easily be identified through STD screening and most can be treated with a simple course of antibiotics.
Why Arrange an STD Screening?
Getting screened for STDs is a good idea for anyone who is sexually active. Many STDs can remain hidden, without causing symptoms, so the only way to be sure you are healthy is to undergo testing. If you have an untreated STD it could cause serious problems, including infertility. However, most sexually transmitted infections can easily be treated once they are detected by screening.
You might want to arrange STD screening if:
- You are sexually active, especially if you have had unprotected sex
- You have noticed symptoms that could be caused by an STD
- You are planning on getting pregnant and you want to be sure you are healthy
- You are having a procedure such as a contraceptive coil insertion and you want to be sure there is no risk from an infection
What to Expect
When you visit the clinic for STD screening, the doctor will usually begin by asking some questions about your health and sexual history. Our specialists are experienced gynaecologists who will help you to feel as comfortable as possible while you talk. You might discuss:
- Any symptoms you’ve been experiencing that could be caused by an STD
- When you last had sex
- Whether you’ve had unprotected sex (without a condom)
Depending on your situation, the doctor will recommend which STI tests are appropriate. Different types of tests are needed to check for different infections, such as Chlamydia, gonorrhoea, herpes, syphilis and HIV. The tests you need will depend on which infections you are at risk of and whether you’ve had any symptoms. You might need to have:
- A blood test
- A urine test
- A swab taken from your urethra or vagina
- A gynaecological exam
What Happens Next
The results of your STD tests will be given to you as soon as possible. Once you have them:
- If no infections were found, no further action is needed. However, you should consider using condom to protect your self in the future and come back for more STD screening to ensure you stay healthy.
- If a problem was identified, the doctor will diagnose a specific STD and provide the treatment you need. In most cases, a course of antibiotics will be able to eliminate the infection.
- You should avoid having sex until the treatment is complete.
- In some cases, an STD can cause more serious problems. Your doctor may recommend additional tests or treatment if there have been any complications.
- You should inform your current or past sexual partners of the diagnosis so that they can also get tested and treated.