Ask Dr. Swiner- The Truth about STD’s

There must be something about the warm weather and sunshine of the summer that causes some young (and some old) minds to become reckless. I say this in awe, as I seem to have been treating many more sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) within the past couple of months than I have all year long! And unfortunately, those that I have been treating for it are my young teenagers and 20-somethings. This inspired and prompted me to do a review of the most common STDs and myths about them. I hope that if you’re a parent with a child in this age group that you remind them of a couple of things.

The first issue is a scary one. As a doctor I hear this statement, “But I feel fine and don’t have any problems” as a frequent answer to whether a person wants to be tested for STDs. Let me say that this is an uninformed statement to make, especially for my men out there. STDs often are transmitted and can linger around and inside the body for years before they’re detected with testing. Even though you personally don’t have symptoms doesn’t mean that you can’t pass it to the next person. Don’t ever let the fact that you don’t “feel bad” be your rationale for declining testing.

 Statistically, all women between ages 15-25years should have testing for Gonorrhea and Chlamydia every time they have their annual pap smears and physical exams, regardless of whether or not they have any symptoms. Both are bacterial infections of the sexual organs. Typically, women will complain of a different kind of discharge (mucus) than they would normally have. Sometimes, this mucus is of a different color or character (yellow or green, thick) and may cause irritation, itching, or burning with urination or with intercourse. Both men and women can experience these symptoms, but what I’ve noticed is that men may not suffer ANY of these classic symptoms and still have the infection.

But, guess what? These misconceptions don’t only occur in the young population. I had one older male patient, who doesn’t use condoms with his 2 female partners, recently tell me that he was “fine” because he urinated and wiped himself clean after intercourse. Oh no! He’s putting both himself and his 2 partners at risk for all sorts of infections. Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, Trichomonas, HPV, and Herpes are transmitted the very same way that HIV/AIDS, Syphilis, and Hepatitis are transmitted. If you’ve never heard of Trichomonas, or “Trich”, it is also an STD. It is characterized as a frothy, greenish discharge that causes irritation in the abdominal and pelvic area that needs antibiotic treatment.

Are all STDs fatal? No, but women in particular can have damage of their female organs to the point they have to have surgery or can’t have children, which can be devastating. Sometimes these diseases, such as Herpes, can cause meningitis. Hepatitis causes liver damage and can lead to death. Syphilis, which still exists, can cause neurological problems. HPV, clearly, is concerning because of its link to cervical cancer. HIV/AIDS goes without saying.

What’s the best way to never come into contact with these infections? Never have sex. But because this isn’t realistic in the real world, don’t have sex until you’re ready and for goodness sakes, use a condom. Plain and simple. Ladies, protect yourselves because not everyone is looking out for you and your safety. Men, be smart and protect yourselves as well. If you have any questions, go to the doctor to be tested, and please have regular HIV testing. Don’t be afraid to talk about those things that can potentially save your life.

Be safe and be blessed,

 Dr. Swiner

C.Nicole Swiner, MD is currently a Family Physician in Durham, NC, and has worked in a clinic owned by the University of North Carolina since 2007, after completing her residency training there. She received her undergraduate degree from Duke University.

© 2010 – 2011, Shalena D.I.V.A. – Author| Speaker| Life And Business Coach. All rights reserved.

29 Comments

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ShalenaD.I.V.A. ShalenaD.I.V.A said: Ask Dr. Swiner- The Truth about STD’s: There must be something about the warm… http://goo.gl/fb/9btrv Be blessed! […]

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  3. Shalenadiva on May 18, 2010 at 10:20 am

    Did the guy really think that he wouldn’t pass along an STD if he wiped off his penis and urinated after sex? That’s ludicrous!

  4. alicia on July 19, 2010 at 3:09 pm

    great article…i will pass this along

  5. www.shalenadiva.com via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:12 pm

    Some of these older folks out here need to be shot because they should know better. You can’t be reckless in this area. These days, you can’t take any chances. I’M COOL!

  6. Tay Gritty Runthecity via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    GOT THE SAME PROBLEM OUT HERE IN DENVER WIT THESE OLD ASS NASTY CATS… XL MAGNUM GOOD CLEAN FUN…

  7. Roger Duncan via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    Ok, this takes the cake. That has got to be the most IGNANT comment I have heard ! From a supposedly grown ass man ? Getthehellouttatown!

  8. Roger Duncan via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    Michael baisden is talking about a sinilar topic, only dealing with young kids being treated at clinics over and over again for multiple STDs. I can better understand that mentality from a child but not from a grown man.hell to the no !

  9. www.shalenadiva.com via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    @Roger, i am listening to Mike Baisden now and decided to post this link because people think young folks are reckless, but grown folks are just as bad. My good friend and soror, Dr. Nicole Swiner wrote this article for me and this quote jumped out at me like WTH, too! But the sad thing is that the older population is contracting HIV at a higher rate than the youngsters. I think they think it’s a “young person’s disease. I also learned of a young lady who has HIV. Guess how she got it? her father injected her with heroine and allow his get high partners to rape her. Now she is infected–poor thing. My father died from HIV through IV drug use so I can only imagine how much this girl was exposed to. Her grown behind father should’ve known better not to inject his baby or allow others to violate her. GROWN folks are no better than the young ones. SMH!

  10. MsDebbie MsEdmonson Boyd via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    Nasty.Nasty. That is All I Can Say. Just Made Me SICK! N.A.S.T.Y.

  11. Nicole Price Swiner via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    @Roger-yep, it’s sadly a true story about an “old” man.

  12. Gene Steele via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    I get them in there 50’s – 70’s with HIV & AIDS!! Some of them nor their families even knew till it was too late!! So make sure its covered up for safety!!!

  13. Lotta Faith Brooks via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    SMH What happen to the RESPECT for SELF n OTHERS!

  14. MsDebbie MsEdmonson Boyd via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    I know this was TV But it was on. One on One. When Filx Girlfriend told him to be tested for HIV. I Did the Samething. My Word was it is A BIG Disease with A Little Name and I Will Not have My Name with it. Ex Serviceman or Not!

  15. Juivon P. Williams via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    What upsets me too is that there are ethicolegal aspects & repercussions for healthfare providers in revealing a person’s status in the healthcare system around the world so in a way, our governments are protecting (in good ways & bad) the very persons that can use the HIV virus to knowingly infect others. Most other STDs can be treated somewhat (except herpes) but what is a man/or woman to do when they’ve been infected by someone they trust!!!

  16. Willie Ross via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    THIS IS WHAT THE LORD COMMAND IN SO MANY WORDS. ” DO NOT LIVE OF THE WORLD, JUST LIVE IN IT! THE LORD ONLY GIVE PERMISSION TO HAVE SEX AFTER MARRIAGE. WE ALL GUILTY! I HAVE BEEN SELEVANT SINCE THE MIDDLE OF 08! NOW I AM PLEASED TO A MAJOR LEVEL! MY BODY AND MY SOUL IS CRYSTAL CLEAN AND CLEAR! I LOVE THE LORD!

  17. Kaykay Kay via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    This shouldnt be a surprise. People get ur mate status before during ya’ll term. And even after knowing strap it up!! Thats if ur gonna be out here having sex. On the flip side, u should be waiting on when ur married.

  18. Erica Carameldelight Sanders via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 6:39 pm

    That what u call nasty nasty nasty……

  19. www.shalenadiva.com via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Just thinking about what he said makes me say ill again. He didn’t even say he washed his behind. He just wiped himself… yuck

  20. Christine McCracken Payne via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 7:14 pm

    Must be talkin about gene again..LMAO hahahaha just playin

  21. Gene Steele via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    @Christina! Oh wait up!!! I’m always clean!! U old Crab!!!! LOL!! Weren’t u going to ur grill to make another excuse to burn dinner????? Don’t talk about me like that! U know Shalena got that crazy crush on me!!! LMAO

  22. Christine McCracken Payne via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    LMAO…

  23. Christine McCracken Payne via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 7:50 pm

    Gene i told you i can cook and in your case puree.. 😉

  24. Gene Steele via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    @Christine! Girl please! U can’t seasion meat for crying out loud!!! LOL

  25. Christine McCracken Payne via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    lmao.. Right thats why i just finished grillin.. now im about to serve them kids up!

  26. Nicole Price Swiner via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    By the way, everyone feel free to join my medical info Facebook page, Dr. Swiner’s Medical Notes, for helpful tidbits and discussion topics. (thanks Shalena diva!)

  27. Gene Steele via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 8:55 pm

    Haha! Do ur thing Christine! ; )

  28. www.shalenadiva.com via Facebook on May 12, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    @Nicole, thank you for writing this article. Do you still write for that local paper? Any new articles? I could post them. Let me know. Also, post the link to your page.

  29. Wakeelah Everfield via Facebook on May 13, 2011 at 9:24 am

    Aww..noo.. 🙁

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