The fact that there is such a stigma surrounding sexually transmitted diseases leads to a lot of unfortunate side effects. Because no one wants to talk about these very common infections, there isn’t enough information out there to help people prevent them. Some of these people even spread the infections to others simply because they aren’t aware they have it themselves. About 20 million new cases are diagnosed every year in America. If more people felt comfortable talking about this issue, that number would drop significantly.

The thought that someone might think less of them because they go to an STD clinic stops a lot of people from seeking a diagnosis and treatment for a condition that could be cured with antibiotics. People today really need to do better to educate the youth and make talking about sexual health as natural as it really should be. These conversations could take place in the home, in schools and in the doctor’s office. Women and men should receive the education they need to help them avoid getting STDs and getting prompt treatment for them if they do get infected.

It’s essential for anyone who has or thinks they may have an STD to share that information with their partner or partners. Removing the stigma will make this easier and may even help preserve relationships. When partners don’t feel comfortable telling each other about their own health conditions, they are more likely to spread the infections to others. Sites like offer tips for people who want to do their part to reduce the stigma and make an impact on eradicating these illnesses.

One of the best strategies for making conversations about sexual health less uncomfortable is for everyone to educate themselves. When people know the facts, they are less likely to entertain myths and better able to share the truth with others. Contributing to organizations that offer sexual education programs can have an even larger impact. These organizations rely heavily on private donations. They are sometimes the only means of information for children in families that don’t talk about sexuality and perpetuate the stigma of sexually transmitted diseases.