Why do STIs occur?
STIs are caused by a variety of bacteria, viruses, and parasites. They are commonly spread through sexual activities involving the exchange of bodily fluids, direct contact with sores, or contact with infected skin or mucous membranes.
What are the symptoms of STIs?
STIs can present a variety of symptoms, and sometimes, there might be no noticeable symptoms at all.
However, common signs that you might have an STI include:
Discomfort during sex or urination: Feeling pain or discomfort during intercourse or while urinating can be a sign of several STIs.
Unusual discharge from the penis: An unusual discharge from the penis could be a symptom of infections such as gonorrhea or chlamydia.
Itching around the genital area: Persistent itching around the genitals may be caused by an STI.
Skin changes around the genitals: Rashes, warts, blisters, or sores around the genital area can be due to various STIs.
Swelling or redness around the genitals: Inflammation or redness around the genital area can be another symptom of an STI.
Flu-like symptoms: Fever, fatigue, and body aches might also be present, especially in the early stages of HIV infection.
It’s essential to remember that having one or more of these symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you have an STI. Different factors could be causing these symptoms, and only a healthcare professional can give a definitive diagnosis.
If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s crucial to seek professional medical advice promptly. Early diagnosis and treatment of STIs are vital for effective management and preventing complications.
Book an appointment with our telehealth team for a fast and convenient diagnosis. We can refer you to pathology testing to determine if you have an STI and which one. Plus, instead of going into a physical office, our doctors can conveniently prescribe the best treatment plan for you online instead of going into a physical office.
What are the risk factors for STIs?
Engaging in unprotected sex, having multiple sexual partners, or having sex with a partner with an STI increases the risk. Lack of knowledge and awareness about safe sex practices and STI prevention also contributes to the risk.
Risks of untreated STIs
If left untreated, STIs can lead to severe health complications, including infertility, chronic pain, and increased susceptibility to HIV. They can also have emotional and psychological impacts, affecting relationships and mental health.
What are some common STIs in men?
Gonorrhea and Chlamydia: Often asymptomatic, these bacterial infections can cause urethral discharge and discomfort if symptoms do appear.
Syphilis: This bacterial infection starts as a painless sore but can develop into severe complications if untreated.
Herpes: Caused by the HSV virus, it leads to outbreaks of painful sores in the genital area.
HPV (Human Papillomavirus): Some strains of HPV can lead to genital warts and certain cancers.
What are some treatment options?
Treatment varies based on the STI. Common approaches include antibiotics for bacterial STIs and antiviral medications for viral STIs. Regular screening, vaccinations, and practising safe sex are crucial in managing and preventing STIs.
Ready to consult with an expert online?
For further questions, personalised advice regarding STIs, or referrals for STI pathology testing, our experts in men’s health at Phenix Health are available 24/7 through telehealth. Book an online consultation with our experienced Australian-based doctors for discreet and professional advice.