While doing my research recently on the topic of teenagers and sexually transmitted diseases, I can’t help but share new statistics and facts that involve our generation of kids. Sure, most teens by now have learned a few things about sexually transmitted diseases. Sex Ed classes and parents may touch upon the subject of how NOT to get pregnant, discussing safe sex. But, what about the talk beyond preventing pregnancy? The discussions about how STD's can be transmitted without even engaging in sex? Did you know that close to 50% of teenage girls and boys between 15 and 19 yrs old are having oral sex?
1 in 4 teens, under the age of 19 has been infected with one type of STD? And what’s disturbing is that this is occurring WITHOUT any intercourse at all (mouth and throat infections). Skin-to-skin contact is the cause of many sexually transmitted diseases, and symptoms can often lay dormant in the body for a long time. The fact is, while many schools teach sex education, over 40% of high school students are practicing unsafe sex, or engaging in other activities without intercourse that involve the exchange of body fluid and passing it on from one partner to another. For in depth questions, I encourage families with teenage sons and daughters to consult with their physician.
The four most common STD’s –
The alarming number of STD’s amongst high school students is much more common than you might think. A scary reality, and sadly, these STD’s are occurring at younger ages now. It’s no longer just the common cold or a bacteria/virus being spread. So, the question is, what exactly does your son or daughter know about contracting an STD WITHOUT having sex at all? Think about this for a second…it might be somewhat of an uncomfortable conversation for many parents to have. Or, it just might be THE conversation to have.