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Health Information For Parents
It is important for parents to talk to their kids and teens about STDs (sexually transmitted diseases). Your kids need to understand how STDs spread and how to protect themselves.
STDs (also called sexually transmitted infections, or STIs) are infections that spread through sex (vaginal, oral, or anal). Some STDs can spread through close contact with the genitals or body fluids.
Talking to kids and teens about sex and STDs does not make it more likely that they’ll have sex. But if they do become sexually active, they will understand the risks and know how to protect themselves.
Talking about STDs and other personal subjects like sex and puberty shouldn’t be one big talk at a particular age. Instead, start the conversation early, and slowly build on your child’s understanding. By about 10–13 years old, most kids understand what sex is and are ready to learn about STDs.
But even if your child is older and you haven’t started talking about STDs, it’s not too late to have the conversation. A late talk is better than no talk at all.
Sometimes it can be hard to find the right time to talk about STDs. A good time to start the conversation might be:
Talk about the types of STDs:
Cover these key points:
You can get reliable information about STDs at:
If you don’t feel comfortable talking with your kids about STDs, make sure they can turn to someone else for accurate information. This could be a doctor or
, counselor, school nurse, teacher, or a trusted family member.
Kids and teens need to know about STDs. It’s best if they get the facts from someone reliable.
You’ve probably heard lots of discouraging news about sexually transmitted diseases. The good news is that STDs can be prevented. Find out how to protect yourself.
Find out what the experts have to say.
Parents should learn about the most common STDs, how they spread, and how they’re diagnosed and treated.
You know you should talk about sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) before the action starts. But what if the thought of having “the talk” makes you nervous? These tips can help.
Abstinence is the only form of birth control that is 100% effective in preventing pregnancy. Abstinence also protects people against STDs.
Before you consider having sex, you need to know how to protect yourself. Read this article to get the basics on birth control.
Talking to your kids about sex can be a challenge. But discussing issues like birth control can help lower teens’ risk of unintended pregnancy or getting an STD.
Condoms are thin pouches that keep sperm from getting into the vagina. There are male condoms and female condoms.
Chlamydia is an STD that often has no symptoms, so lots of people can have it and not know it. Read this article to learn how to protect yourself.
Chlamydia is an STD caused by bacteria. It’s important to know the symptoms, as treatment can prevent the infection from leading to other health problems.
Condoms may be a good birth control option for couples who are responsible enough to use one each time and people who want protection against STDs.
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) that’s usually caused by the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2).
You’ve probably heard lots about sexually transmitted diseases. The good news is that STDs can be prevented. For information on how to protect yourself and how to treat genital warts, read this article.
Genital warts are caused by certain types of the human papillomavirus (HPV), which is one of the most common STDs. A vaccine can prevent HPV infection, which causes most genital warts and cervical cancers.
The STD gonorrhea can be very dangerous if it’s not treated, even in someone who has mild or no symptoms. For information about how to protect yourself, read this article.
Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD). Many people with gonorrhea have no symptoms. They can spread the infection to others without knowing it.
Girls should get their first gynecological checkup between ages 13 and 15. Find out what happens during a yearly gyn visit — and why most girls don’t get internal exams.
Often the only way to know if someone is infected with HIV is through testing. Here are the facts on what’s involved in getting tested â and who should get tested for HIV and why.
Parents can help prevent HIV/AIDS by learning the facts and talking with their kids regularly about healthy behaviors, feelings, and sexuality.
The HPV vaccine can help protect against the virus that causes genital warts and may lead to some kinds of cancer. Find out more in this article for teens.
Pelvic inflammatory disease, sometimes called PID, is an infection of the fallopian tubes, uterus, cervix, or ovaries. Learn how to protect yourself.
Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is a serious infection of the female reproductive organs that may cause severe symptoms, minor symptoms, or no symptoms at all.
Pubic lice are six-legged creatures that infest the hair in the pubic area. Pubic lice infestation is considered a sexually transmitted disease (STD), but it can be contracted in other ways.
Pubic lice, or “crabs,” are tiny insects that usually spread through sex.
Answering kids’ questions about sex is a responsibility many parents dread. But by answering these questions honestly, parents can help foster healthy feelings about sex.
Syphilis is a sexually transmitted disease (STD). Early treatment can cure it and prevent long-term problems.
Trichomoniasis is a curable disease that can be passed from one person to another during sex. The good news is that it can be prevented. Read about how to protect yourself.
Trichomoniasis (or “trich”) is a sexually transmitted disease. Many people with trich have no symptoms, so they can spread it to others without knowing it.
BV is the most common vaginal infection. Although it’s a mild infection, it can cause serious problems if it’s not treated. Find out how to recognize BV and what to do about it in this article for teens.
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted disease (STD). There’s no cure for genital herpes, but medicines can help control it.
There is no cure for AIDS, which is why prevention is so important. Get the facts on HIV/AIDS, as well as how it affects the body and is treated, in this article.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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