Sexually Transmitted Infections

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Sexually Transmitted Infections

Although Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) affect individuals of all ages, STIs are particularly prevalent among young people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that youth ages 15-24 make up just over one quarter of the sexually active population, but account for half of the 20 million new sexually transmitted infections that occur in the United States each year. The resources on this page provide information about the impact of STIs on youth as well as AAP and CDC resources for reaching this population. 

Data and Statis​​​tics 

CDC STD Surveillance Data (2015) – Statistics and trends for STIs through 2015  
Reported STDs in the US – A snapshot of the prevalence of STIs in the United States 

General STI Infor​mation

For Providers
The AAP Red Book, the authority on pediatric infectious diseases, provides information on the epidemiology, evaluation, management, prevention, and treatment of STIs in adolescents.  

Providers should address prevention, screening, and treatment of STIs with their sexually active adolescent and young adult patients as part of their regular annual health care visits. Specific strategies include: 

1) Conduct a sexual history from each adolescent and young adult patient 

2) Encourage abstinence as the best way to prevent STIs 

3) Emphasize condom use (in addition to alternative contraceptive methods) 

4) Counsel, screen, and provide treatment for Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs). Specific guidance from the AAP and CDC include: 

For Adolescents a​​nd Young Adults
It is important for sexually active adolescents and young adults to understand what STIs are, how they are transmitted, how to prevent them, the importance of getting tested regularly for STIs, and the treatment options available. Here is some information about STIs to share with adolescents and young adults. 

Staying healthy and preventing STDs (from the CDC)  

The following information is from HealthyChildren.org, guidance from the AAP for patients and families 

Types of Sexually Transmitted Infectio​ns

There are many types of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but there are some that are more common in the adolescent and young adult population, which are listed below. For a full list of all STIs, please visit the CDC Web site.  

Chlamydia
Gonorrhea
Syphilis
Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)

Resour​ces

A guide to sexual history taking (from the CDC) – provides guidance and sample questions to ask when talking to adolescents about their sexual activity and how to prevent STIs. 

2015 CDC STD Treatment Guidelines  

Sexual Health Resource Exchange - A web-based resource library that provides access to high quality, accurate, multi-media public awareness and education materials on sexually transmitted infections and other sexual health issues. Users can search for, view and download customizable public awareness and educational materials. Users can also share their own resources using the easy-to-use upload process. The SHRE is managed by the National Coalition for Sexual Health. 

CDC STDs and HIV fact sheet   

CDC Sexual Risk Behaviors: HIV, STD, and Teen Pregnancy Prevention  

CDC Compendium of Evidence-Based Interventions and Best Practices for HIV Prevention 

Physicians for Reproductive Health – Adolescent Reproductive and Sexual Health Education Project (ARSHEP) ​

ARSHEP has created a comprehensive, evidence-based curriculum for residency programs, providers, and other professionals who serve adolescents on critical reproductive and sexual health topics.

STI Testing Site

Find a testing site.

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