Recent research has revealed some interesting information about our sexual habits. It seems that we’re a bit more promiscuous than previously thought. Approximately 11 percent of men have more than one sex partner and one in five young travelers sleep with a stranger during their trip. It also turns out that a woman’s desire to engage in some risky business is internally sourced, meaning once a month (during ovulation) she can’t help but fall for the bad guy. And fall she does, right into bed. This information wouldn’t be too disturbing (aside from the various moral implications) if it weren’t for some equally startling STD news.
We broke records in 2006, reporting more Chlamydia cases than the country has ever seen. Over one million diagnoses were documented, with the estimated actual occurrence being closer to three million. Gonorrhea and syphilis skyrocketed, too. The previously declining diseases steadily rose throughout the year, reaching numbers in the upper thousands. And those are just the STDs that have to be nationally reported. Nineteen million new cases of all STDs occur annually, the majority stemming from genital herpes, papillomavirus and trichomonas infections. Yet, as the aforementioned habits suggest, we aren’t doing much to combat them.
But we should be. We should all be having safe sex. We should be talking to our partners and putting off intercourse if there’s another bedfellow in the closet or a past that borders on shady. We should avoid the holiday romp and stick with monogamous, communicative and honest relationships. We should also be using protection.
Condoms are the best way to avoid STDs (if you don’t count abstinence). If you’re unsure how to use one, learn. Hopefully, your partner knows, but if not, there are resources available that can teach you. And don’t be afraid to be cautious. It’s better than being infected.
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