Top 5 Methods to Prevent STDs

Top 5 Methods to Prevent STDs

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are infections, which are spread from one person to another by coming into sexual contact with an infected person. A person who has a sexually transmitted infection (STI) can pass the infection to other people by way of contact with their skin, mouth, genitals, body fluids or rectum. Anyone having sexual contact-oral, vaginal or anal sex- with an infected person can get the STI. It is not necessary to exhibit symptoms of an STD. Even if no symptoms are present, your health may be affected. Although treatment and cures exist for some STDs, not all of them can be treated. Since STDs are highly preventable, prevention is always the best option.

What are the causes of STDs?

The causes of STDs are viral or bacterial infections. STDs that are caused due to bacterial infections are treated using antibiotics. There is no cure for STDs that are caused by viral infections, but you can take measures to treat their symptoms. 

What factors increase your risk of contracting an STD?

The below-mentioned factors can increase your risk of contracting an STD:

  • Having sex with greater than one partner
  • Having a sexual partner who themselves have sex with greater with one partner either currently or in the past
  • Having sex with a person who has an STD or STI
  • Having a personal history of STDs/STIs
  • Using intravenous drugs or if your partner uses intravenous drugs

What are the most commonly occurring STDs?

Some of the commonly occurring STDs are:

  • Chlamydia
  • Genital herpes
  • Gonorrhea
  • HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) infection
  • Syphilis
  • HPV (human papillomavirus) infection
  • Hepatitis B
  • Trichomoniasis

How can you prevent STDs?

The following are the top five methods to prevent STDs:

  • Abstinence

Abstaining from having all types of sexual contact; i.e., vaginal, oral or anal is the most efficient and reliable method to avoid contracting an STD. However, most individuals don’t find abstinence a practical method of dealing with the situation. 

 

  • Vaccination

Getting a vaccine is a safe and effective method that is recommended to prevent HPV and hepatitis B. The HPV vaccine for both females and males may protect against certain common forms of HPV. It is recommended that you get all the three shots (doses) before engaging in sexual activity. However, an HPV vaccine is recommended for all the teen girls and females after the age of 26 years and all the teen boys and males after the age of 21 years who were not given the three shots or doses of HPV vaccine before (at a younger age). You must also get a hepatitis B vaccine in case you had not received the vaccine before (at a younger age). 

 

  • Reduce the number of your sex partners

Reducing the number of sex partners can also decrease the risk of contracting an STD. It is also important to know about the sexual history of your partner. The greater number of partners you have, the greater your risk of getting an STD. The same is also true for your sexual partners, i.e., if they have more partners, then it still increases your risk. You and your sexual partner should get tested for STDs. Moreover, both of you should share the results of your tests with each other. 

 

  • Mutual monogamy

The meaning of mutual monogamy is that you have agreed to have sex with only one individual who has also agreed to have sex with only you. Having a long-term relationship that is mutually monogamous is among the most effective and reliable methods to prevent STDs. You should also have an honest and open conversation regarding sex with your partner. 

 

  • Use condoms

Using male condoms made of latex correctly and consistently is greatly effective in reducing the transmission of STDs. You must use a latex condom each time you are involved in vaginal, oral or anal sex. You can also use a female condom while having vaginal intercourse. You should use dental dams or condoms while having oral sex and gloves during manual penetration. 

In case of using a lubricant, be sure to use a water-based lubricant. It is important to use condoms during the entire sexual act. Though condoms aren’t 100% effective in preventing STDs, they are still extremely effective when used correctly. Hence, learn the method to correctly use condoms. 

You don’t get extra protection by using condoms that have a spermicide as a lubricant. On the contrary, frequently using some spermicides may increase your risk of contracting HIV.  

Rinsing or washing after having sex may help in removing the infectious material present on the skin. Women should pass urine after sex as it reduces the risk of getting UTIs (urinary tract infections). 

 

Some more tips to prevent STDs:

  • Avoid having sex with any person who has genital sores, discharge, rash, or any other symptoms.
  • Avoid sharing underclothes or towels.
  • Wash before and after  having sexual intercourse.
  • Both you and your partner should get tested for STDs, especially HIV before getting involved in sexual activity. 
  • Avoid having sex when you are drunk or have taken drugs. In case you suffer from alcohol or drug abuse, seek help. Individuals who are on drugs or drunk while having sex often don’t follow safe sex practices. 
  • Avoid getting involved in risky sexual practices. Sex acts that break or tear the skin increase your risk of contracting an STD. Germs can pass by way of even tiny cuts, which don’t bleed. The risk is increased with anal sex as rectal tissues may tear easily. STDs can also be transmitted by body fluids. Your risk is highly increased if you have unprotected sex with a person infected with an STD.

Category: Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, STD, SyphilisPost Date: August 5, 2019

Alcohol and Birth Control: What Every Woman Needs to Know

Alcohol And Birth Control What Every Woman Needs To Know

Alcohol and Birth ControlBe it a romantic dinner along with wine or a wild party night that ends in a fling, whether it’s good or bad, sex and alcohol often go hand in hand with one another. Fortunately, drinking alcohol doesn’t change the way your method of birth control works. But, if your birth control relies on action or memory; for instance, you have to use a condom while having sex or take a birth control pill at a particular time, then you have to plan ahead when drinking.

If you are drinking alcohol and using the following types of methods of birth control correctly, then the alcohol will not affect them:

  • Oral contraceptive pills (birth control pills)
  • Depo-Provera shots
  • Condoms
  • Morning after pills (emergency contraceptives)
  • IUDs (intrauterine devices)
  • Implants
  • Vaginal rings
  • Patches 

How can alcohol affect birth control?

Though alcohol doesn’t produce an effect on the workings of your contraception method directly, it may indirectly increase the risk of failure of birth control methods. Alcohol can impact your judgment and behavior and this can result in reducing the effectiveness of birth control. In case you become intoxicated by drinking heavily, the chances of forgetting to take the pill on time increases. This becomes more likely if you drink before the time you would normally take the pill. If you typically take the pill in the morning and you drank alcohol the previous night, it is possible that you might sleep through that normal time. It’s important to remember that  the effectiveness of the pill is affected by the time at which you ingest it. 

Drinking alcohol may also make you more prone to get sick. If you fall sick after drinking alcohol and vomit or throw up within one to two hours of consuming the pill, then your body may not absorb it. This situation is the same as not taking a pill and it may increase your chances of ovulation (release of an egg). 

Do birth control methods affect alcohol tolerance?

Women who take oral contraceptives process or metabolize alcohol more slowly in comparison to women who don’t take the pill. This is because their liver has to process both the hormones present in the pill and the alcohol. Furthermore, the hormones present in contraceptives may affect the water distribution in your body and this may change the rate of elimination of the alcohol you consume. Thus, alcohol may remain in your body for a longer duration and its effects may also last longer. 

This can result in higher levels of blood alcohol and may also increase your intoxication level if  you are taking the birth control pill along with drinking alcohol. To put it differently, you can become intoxicated easily and more quickly in comparison to the times when you didn’t take the birth control pill. This makes it more likely to miss a dose or forget to use other kinds of protection while having sex. 

You are also more likely to remain intoxicated due to alcohol for a longer duration during your periods as your body releases a greater amount of hormones during this time. 

Furthermore, when you drink alcohol, it is difficult to correctly use a condom, even if you remember to use one. 

Other risks of drinking alcohol

There are other risks of drinking excessive quantities of alcohol, particularly concerning your sexual behavior. 

Dangerous sexual behavior

After drinking alcohol you may become more careless; thereby, not responsibly using birth control. In a study, it was found that binge drinking or risky drinking in young women almost doubled the chances of contraception becoming ineffective. People who get intoxicated after drinking alcohol are less likely to use condoms and other contraceptives to prevent STIs (sexually transmitted infections) or unwanted pregnancy. There are also chances of regretting your choice of partner to have sex. 

Sexual assault

A link exists between sexual assault and alcohol use. According to a publication by the NIAAA (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism) about half of the individuals who have suffered a sexual assault state that they were drunk or under the influence of alcohol during the sexual assault. It is important to note here that, though someone may have been drinking before a person sexually assaulted them, they are not to blame in any way. The perpetrator is always at fault. 

Planning for the future

If you are taking oral contraceptives and know about drinking in advance then you should plan ahead of time. You may:

  • Set an alarm on your phone to remind yourselves to take your medicine on time.
  • Take your pill during the middle of the day, when there are fewer chances of drinking alcohol. This also increases your chances of being awake to take the pill even if you had alcohol the previous night. 
  • Carry backup birth control such as spermicide and condom with you. You must always use a barrier method of birth control (for instance condoms) to protect yourself from STIs unless you and your partner are in a faithful and long-term relationship. 
  • Choose a type of birth control that is low-maintenance, i.e., you get it and then forget it. Some of these are IUD (a tiny device that your healthcare provider places in the uterus and it can effectively provide protection from unwanted pregnancy for three to 10 years) and implant (a small rod, the size of a matchstick, which releases hormones; your healthcare provider inserts it beneath your arm skin and is effective for up to three years). 

 


Category: Birth ControlPost Date: July 29, 2019

Why IUDs Are Considered the Best Birth Control Method

 

IUD

IUDs or intrauterine devices are widely considered the best birth control method for women. IUDs offer several benefits to women for avoiding pregnancy. Unlike most other contraceptive methods, IUDs are safer, easier to use, and are more effective than other birth control methods.

Here is a glimpse into why IUDs are considered the best birth control method and answers to frequently asked questions:

 

IUD

What are IUDs?

An IUD is a tiny device, which is inserted into the uterus to avoid conception in women. It is a simple, small, T-shaped device that sits within the uterus and releases hormones that help in the prevention of pregnancy.

It takes just a few minutes for the insertion of an IUD. It cannot be seen or felt once it is in place.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions About IUDs:

What are the types of IUDs?

IUDs are typically categorized as hormonal or non-hormonal. Hormonal IUDs work by releasing a small amount of the hormone called progestin into the uterus.

An IUD releases the hormone slowly and continuously to ensure a longer-lasting contraceptive effect. It helps to prevent pregnancy by thickening the mucus in the cervix, thereby preventing sperm from reaching an egg for fertilization to occur.

Hormonal IUDs also prevent pregnancy by inhibiting ovulation, the process of releasing an egg from the uterus. As a result, the next step of fertilization of the egg does not occur, thus preventing conception.

Non-hormonal or copper IUDs, just as the name suggests, are wrapped in copper. This metal is safe for the uterus while being toxic to sperm. It causes the destruction of sperm, preventing them from reaching the egg to cause fertilization.

The mechanisms of action of both these types of IUDs are based on the physiological processes involved in fertilization. IUDs are designed to ensure there is no damage to the uterus or endometrium, which is why they are considered the best birth control method.

How effective are IUDs for preventing pregnancy?

One of the reasons why IUDs are so popular is their high level of efficacy. They have a success rate of nearly 99% when it comes to avoiding conception. Once an IUD is inserted, women can feel relaxed and need not worry about an unplanned pregnancy.

How long does an IUD remain effective?

The duration for which an IUD is effective can vary from 3 years to 12 years and varies depending on the brand and the type of IUD.

Most hormonal IUDs work for about 3 to 6 years, while the non-hormonal IUDs have a longer period of action and may last up to 12 years. This is one of the reasons why women choose IUDs as a method of contraception. The longer-lasting action of these devices allows them the freedom they often miss out on while taking daily oral contraceptive pills.

Women can also choose to remove the IUD at any time before its expiry date if they want to get pregnant or switch to another method of birth control.

How long does it take to insert the IUD?

Insertion of an IUD takes just a few minutes. The procedure can be performed in the physician’s clinic and needs no hospitalization. It is a non-invasive procedure.

Women can continue with their daily routine immediately after the insertion. Similarly, even the removal of the IUD can be performed within a few minutes. This offers great convenience to women who lead a busy lifestyle.

Does IUD insertion involve pain?

Women may experience a mild pinching sensation when the physician holds the cervix with the help of equipment before inserting the IUD. The pain caused due to the same is mild and only lasts for a few seconds after the cervix is released. Barring this, the procedure should not cause any major discomfort.

How long does it take for an IUD to be effective?

Most hormonal IUDs are effective immediately when they are inserted within the first 7 days of the start of a menstrual period. Otherwise, it may take about 7 days for them to be effective after insertion. The non-hormonal copper IUDs are effective immediately after they are inserted.

Does an IUD interfere with the future fertility of a woman?

No. IUDs can affect a woman’s chances of getting pregnant only as long as they are within the uterus. Once removed, the woman can conceive within the next one to two months, provided she does not suffer from any other issue linked to infertility.

This offers great convenience to women who would like to avoid pregnancy for a few years. They can get it removed at any time if they wish to start a family.

Are IUDs safe?

Yes. IUDs are extremely safe. Women can choose a hormonal IUD or copper IUD depending on their preferences and the pros and cons of each.

IUDs are safer than most other methods of contraception as they do not cause any serious adverse effects on the normal physiological processes occurring in the body.

In some cases, women may develop side effects like excessive vaginal bleeding, and abdominal pain.

How do you get an IUD?

IUDs may easily be purchased at a local pharmacy. IUDs are also available at many women’s health clinics. Women can visit a gynecologist and discuss the type of IUD suitable for them before choosing one.

IUDs are available at costs varying between $0- $1,300.00. The wide range of prices indicates the differences in them due to the brand name, quality, and effectiveness. However, having said that, it doesn’t mean the IUDs priced in a lower range are less effective or the expensive IUDs can guarantee a 100% success rate for preventing pregnancy.

Women can also get IUDs free of cost or at a discounted rate if they have access to a health insurance plan, a government program, or Medicaid.

Conclusion

IUDs offer a great choice for women who would like to avoid pregnancy for a period ranging from 3 years to more than 10 years. They provide long-term protection against conception and allow women to focus on other priorities. The higher effectiveness, safety, and reduced risk of side effects from IUDs also can also ease the stress and anxiety of having an unplanned pregnancy. For all of these reasons, IUDs are considered the best birth control method.

Her Smart Choice offers IUDs and family planning services in multiple locations throughout the greater Los Angeles, CA area. 

For more information or to schedule an appointment today, please visit: https://hersmartchoice.com/services/iuds/ 

 


Category: Birth ControlPost Date: July 17, 2019
Abortion Clinic Los Angeles

Free Abortion Clinics

Are there free abortion clinics?

 

Are you baffled by the question- is there any free abortion clinic near me? To get an answer to your question, you have to do a little research on the internet and you can get many options where you can get an abortion for free or at a low cost.
Abortions to women in need. You can easily look online to see if there is one near you. You can also contact your doctor to see if there are any providers in their health or insurance network that offer abortion services.

Once you’ve found a reputable abortion clinic, the first step will be to go in and have a consultation with them. During this visit, they will assess the state of your pregnancy and determine which type of abortion will be the safest and easiest for you. It is best to see a doctor as soon as you find out you are pregnant, as abortion is much easier and safer the earlier you have it in your pregnancy. In some states, you may be required to attend pre-abortion counseling that will educate you on other options before making the final decision.

Abortion clinics focus on helping you through the process and keeping you as comfortable as possible. Abortions can be both physically and emotionally taxing, but a good doctor will answer all of your questions and do their best to make sure the process goes very quickly and smoothly. Most abortions performed in a clinic take less than 15 minutes and you’ll have access to trained staff to help you. Although abortion is a sad and unpleasant experience, it can help you live a better life so that you can have children when you are truly ready.


How an Abortion Clinic Can Help You

How an Abortion Clinic Can Help You

how an abortion clinic can help you

 

If you are experiencing an unwanted pregnancy, you’re likely feeling scared and even confused about what to do. While there are many options available to you in this situation, many women choose to have an abortion. There are a few different types of abortions, but they are all medical procedures that can safely end a pregnancy. Although they can be a trying experience, many women find that they are the best option for them physically, emotionally, and financially. If you are considering having an abortion, visiting a reputable and safe abortion clinic should be your first step.

There are many public and private abortion clinics available throughout the country. There are also some doctors that offer this procedure in their offices. Once you find out you are pregnant, your first step should always be to contact your general practitioner or your OB/GYN if you have one. They can check to make sure you are healthy, and then if you decide you want an abortion, they can refer you to a clinic near you that is a good fit for you based on your financial status. Planned Parenthood has many clinics in the United States that offer safe and confidential abortion services, and there are many women’s health centers that provide these services as well.

It is very important to make sure the clinic you go to is a safe and reputable one. Before you go, be sure to read as much as you can online about the procedures and services they offer to ensure you are comfortable with them. If your doctor did not provide you with a referral, there are many women’s health and advocacy organizations that may be able to help you find a clinic. You’ll need to have a consultation with your abortion provider before you can have the procedure. During this consultation, a caring and trained doctor will assess your own personal situation and present you with options that they think would be the best fit for you based on your health and your personal circumstances.

There are a few different types of abortions that are available in a clinic, depending on how far along you are in your pregnancy, and there’s also the option to receive an abortion pill, which you can take in the privacy of your home. Many people choose to have an abortion in a clinic, because it generally takes less than 15 minutes, and you will have the help of highly trained support staff who are very familiar with the procedure. Although abortion can be a very difficult and challenging situation, going to a trusted abortion clinic can make it a bit easier.


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Dr. Vikra Kothandaraman(866)392-1853 doctor.com/Dr-Vikram-Kothandaraman

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