LIFESTYLE & COMMUNITY

When You Are Not Glad You Had A Vacation: STDs That Can Be Contracted At A Resort

September 27, 2018

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are a delicate, but more than relevant topic in our time. And not all of them are transmitted solely through unprotected sexual intercourse. There are cases of infection with STDs at birth (transmission from mother to child), through use of non-sterile medical equipment, blood transfusion and even breastfeeding.

Nevertheless, the vast majority of clinically reported cases result from unprotected sex. Often people discover signs of infection after a vacation, because resort romances, tempting by lack of commitment, are not uncommon. We will consider the most frequently diagnosed diseases, their symptoms, and possible complications.

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1. Gonorrhea

There are about 78 million cases of gonorrhea diagnosed annually in the world. The disease is easily treatable, but if neglected, it can lead to serious health problems. It is caused by the bacterium Neisseria gonorrhoeae. The disease can be asymptomatic even in the active phase, although its signs usually appear within 1-14 days after unprotected sex. The absence of treatment increases the risk of contracting HIV.

Symptoms

Females:

  • pain in the abdominal or pelvic area;
  • pain during intercourse;
  • pain in the eyes and throat (after oral sex);
  • yellow or green vaginal discharge;
  • purulent discharge from the eyes;
  • itching, pain, bleeding during the bowel movement;
  • bleeding in the middle of the menstrual cycle and/or after intercourse;
  • fever;
  • swelling of the joints 14-30 days after the appearance of the main symptoms;
  • swelling of the vulva;
  • vomiting;
  • photosensitivity;
  • swollen lymph nodes;
  • frequent and painful urination.

Males:

  • pain in the eyes and throat (after oral sex);
  • pain in the testicles/scrotum;
  • yellow or green discharge from the urethral canal ;
  • purulent discharge from the eyes;
  • swelling of the joints 14-30 days after the appearance of the main symptoms;
  • photosensitivity;
  • swollen lymph nodes;
  • frequent and painful urination.

READ ALSO: 'The Bachelor' Producers Reveal The Top STD That Causes Contestants To Be Disqualified

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Complications

Symptoms of gonorrhea shouldn’t be ignored, because it is fraught with multiple complications.

Females:

  • pelvic abscesses;
  • infertility;
  • ectopic pregnancy;
  • chronic pelvic pain.

Males:

  • infertility;
  • epididymitis (inflammation of a tube located at the back of the testicles).

2. Ureaplasmosis

READ ALSO: Bacterial Vaginosis: 4 Extremely Disturbing Symptoms Of Unpleasant Condition

Ureaplasma is a kind of parasitic bacteria that usually affects the genitourinary system of a person or an animal. It’s unique because it lacks the cell walls, which makes it unresponsive to a number of antibiotics. Although one may not even suspect the presence of ureaplasma in the body, the disease leads to various reproductive dysfunctions.

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Symptoms and complications

One should check for ureaplasmosis in case there are problems getting pregnant, as it is one of the reasons of infertility. In women, the bacteria may cause an infection that makes pregnancy more difficult to achieve, and affect the number of sperm and their ability to move in men.

Symptoms:

  • pelvic and abdominal pain;
  • itching in the perineum;
  • urethritis (inflammation of the urethra or urinary tube).

Women also often have bacterial vaginosis - a vaginal infection, which is characterized by itching, unpleasant odor and atypical discharge.

Complications:

  • formation of kidney stones;
  • prostatitis (men);
  • endometritis (women).

Ureaplasmosis during pregnancy

Ureaplasmosis is most dangerous if contracted during pregnancy. In this case, it can lead to premature birth, and babies are prone to urinary insufficiency, pneumonia, meningitis, and other brain damages, developmental disorders and diseases of the respiratory system.

Infection of the fetus with ureaplasmosis shortly before birth is fraught with:

  • miscarriage;
  • stillbirth;
  • premature rupture of amniotic membranes and discharge of amniotic fluid;
  • premature birth.

READ ALSO: Vaginal Thrush: 8 Most Frequently Asked Questions About Candidiasis Answered

3. Mycoplasmosis

If you have been diagnosed with mycoplasmosis, make sure to specify which type. There are 5 of them, but only 2 - Mycoplasma genitalium and Mycoplasma hominis are sexually transmitted. The disease is caused by bacteria that don’t have cell walls, as in the previous case, which requires a special approach in treatment.

Symptoms of Mycoplasma genitalium

Females:

  • pain during intercourse and bleeding after it;
  • vaginal discharge.

Males:

  • discharge from the penis;
  • tingling or burning sensation during urination;
  • urethritis.

READ ALSO: 6 Possible Factors That Reduce Female Fertility

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Mycoplasma hominis

Bacteria of this kind are present in the body of almost half of all females in the world, while there are a little fewer infected men. In good general health, it doesn’t cause any trouble. However, it is a matter of concern for those with low immune function and pregnant women.

In women, Mycoplasma hominis often causes inflammation in the pelvic region and infection of the reproductive system.

Infection at the time of conception or after it is fraught with:

  • miscarriage;
  • infection of the fetus;
  • premature birth;
  • ectopic pregnancy.

4. Chlamydia

In the early stages, chlamydia may go unnoticed, but it doesn’t mean that there is no reason for concern. The disease at an advanced stage leads to various health problems, including pathological conditions of the reproductive system and infertility. The risk of contracting chlamydia is higher in comparison with other STDs because it is also transmitted through unprotected oral sex and even by touching the genitals of an infected person.

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Symptoms

The signs of chlamydia in men and women are somewhat similar, with the exception of some physiological differences.

They include:

  • pain during sexual intercourse;
  • pain in the lower abdomen, in men - also in the testicles;
  • yellow/green discharge from the penis or vagina;
  • burning sensation during urination.

Depending on the type of unprotected sex, there may also be observed:

  • sore throat;
  • pain in the anus;
  • rectal prolapse;
  • cough;
  • fever.

With underlying chlamydia, some women develop inflammation of the fallopian tubes, which are characterized by:

  • abnormal bleeding between menstruations;
  • pain in the pelvic region;
  • fever;
  • nausea.

Complications

Females:

  • infertility;
  • inflammation and infection affecting the reproductive organs;
  • infection of the child during birth, which can lead to eye infections and pneumonia.

Males:

  • inflammation of the prostate;
  • urethritis;
  • epididymitis.

5. Trichomoniasis

This is one of the most insidious diseases caused by bacterial infections. Women are more susceptible to it, but most of the infected people may not even know about it since often it doesn’t manifest itself.

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Symptoms

After unprotected intercourse, trichomoniasis can show on day 5-28 by:

  • pain in the lower abdomen;
  • foamy discharge (transparent, white, yellowish or greenish);
  • discomfort during urination and during intercourse.

Complications

The presence of bacteria that cause trichomoniasis in the body increases the risk of contracting HIV. In particular, you should watch out for this infection during pregnancy, as it can cause premature birth or insufficient weight of the baby, as well as various developmental disorders and health problems.

This is by far not the exhaustive list of “souvenirs” one can bring back from an eventful vacation or contract through unprotected sex. It also includes chancroid, crabs, genital herpes, hepatitis B, human papillomavirus, molluscum contagiosum, scabies, syphilis, HIV, and AIDS.

READ ALSO: 7 Warning Signs Of Chlamydia Infection, And How To Protect Yourself From This Dangerous STI

How to prevent infection?

The most effective way to protect yourself from STDs is to use barrier contraceptives for any type of sexual contact. All other means of birth control are aimed exclusively at preventing an unwanted pregnancy and don’t offer any protection against sexually transmitted diseases.

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It is also recommended to:

  • be vaccinated against HPV and hepatitis B;
  • abstain from sexual contact with new partners if means of barrier protection can’t be used;
  • avoid consuming alcohol and drugs that can affect your judgment;
  • raise awareness of responsibility in terms of sexual health among young people;
  • undergo medical examinations and make sure that the partner does the same;
  • have a monogamous relationship.

No one is safe when it comes to contracting STDs, especially since some of them can be transmitted even without sexual contact. But to protect yourself and prevent other people from getting infected is something that everyone can and should do.

Source: MedicalNewsToday, healthline, MedicineNet.com

READ ALSO: Question To A Gynecologist: What Can Cause Vaginal Pain?

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