Are STDs Contagious?

Are STDs Contagious?


Are STDs Contagious?

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), sometimes called sexually transmitted infections (STIs), are contagious. Awareness of the risk of STDs empowers you to take care of your health. Read more to learn how to protect yourself. 

How are STDs Transmitted?

STDs are passed easily through sexual contact; this includes vaginal, oral, or anal sex. Any contact with an infected partner’s mouth, skin, genitals, mouth, or bodily fluids can transmit an STD. Some STDs can also be transferred from a pregnant woman to her baby.

Even after you have been treated for an STD, it is possible to contract the same STD if exposed to it again.  

Get Tested

If you are sexually active, you should be tested yearly for STDs. You should be tested more often if you have any of the following risk factors: 

  • Unprotected sex
  • Sex with multiple partners
  • Have a history of STDs
  • Begin having sex with a new partner
  • Your partner tests positive for an STD
  • Injecting drugs

Testing is essential because some STDs do not have any symptoms. Even when a person doesn’t have signs of an STD, they can still give the STD to a sexual partner. If symptoms occur, they will likely be in the genital area and may include the following:

  • Bumps, sores, or warts on or near your penis, vagina, mouth, or anus.
  • Swelling or severe itching near your penis or vagina.
  • Discharge from your penis.
  • Vaginal discharge with a foul odor that causes irritation or is a different color or amount than usual.
  • Vaginal bleeding that’s not your period.
  • Painful sex.
  • Painful urination or frequent urination.

STDs can also damage your health even if you have no symptoms. STDs can have long-term complications for your health:

  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID): a severe infection that can cause scarring of your reproductive organs
  • Infertility
  • Increased risk of other STDs like HIV/AIDS
  • Increase the risk of cervical cancer



Most STDs are easily treated. Even when STDs have no symptoms, they should still be treated to prevent complications from developing. STDs will not resolve on their own. Treatment for STDs depend on whether they are bacterial or viral in nature.

STDs that are bacterial, like chlamydia or gonorrhea, are treated with a course of antibiotics. A provider will prescribe medication after a patient tests positive for the STD or if a recent sexual partner has tested positive.

Some STDs that are viral, like HIV, are treated with antivirals. Viral STDs are not curable, but with treatment, they can cause fewer symptoms. It is essentialessetial to know that if a person has a viral STD they are still contagious even if their symptoms are managed with medication.

Get Tested Now

At Vida Medical Clinic, we offer free STD testing and treatment for both men and women. You will have results in 3-5 days, and we offer treatment for chlamydia, gonorrhea, and trichomoniasis. Take control of your health by scheduling an appointment today!