Lifestyles Center Blog


Whether you have symptoms or not, it’s important to be tested. Some common symptoms of STD’s include sores on the genitals, discharge from the penis or vagina, itching, and burning during urination.

But remember, many infections often do not cause any symptoms. Many people have sexually transmitted infections and never know it. Many people get or spread infections without ever having symptoms.

If you’ve had sex with another person and did not use a condom, female condoms, dental dam or other barrier, it’s a good idea to talk to your healthcare provider about STD testing. Getting tested can put your mind at ease or get you (and your partner) needed treatment. It’s also important to learn about ways you and your partner can protect yourselves in the future through safer sex.

STD Facts

  • STD’s are sexually transmitted diseases. This means they are most often — but not exclusively — spread by sexual intercourse.
  • More than 65 million Americans have an incurable disease.
  • You can get an STD from vaginal, oral or anal sex. Some other types of STD’s you can be infected through contact, such as trichomoniasis where you can be infected from toilet seats although its more commonly spread from physical contact.

Where Can I Get Tested?

  • Your local planned parenthood
  • Clinics
  • Private doctor’s offices
  • Health departments
  • And you very own Mary Walker Health Center

How Are Each STD Test Done?

It depends on which infection you may have. And some infections can be tested for in more than one way. Your test may include a:

  • Physical exam — Your health care provider may look at your genitals and/or your anus for any signs of an infection, such as a rash, discharge, sores, or warts. For women, this exam can be similar to a pelvic exam.
  • Blood sample — Your provider may take a blood sample, either with a needle or by pricking the skin to draw drops of blood.
  • Urine sample — You may be asked to urinate into a special cup.
  • Discharge, tissue, cell, or saliva sample — Your provider will use a swab to collect samples that will be looked at under a microscope.

Sometimes a diagnosis can be made based on your symptoms and/or a physical exam. Treatment could be prescribed right away. Other times, your healthcare provider may need to send a sample to a lab to be tested. In that case, the results may not be available for several days or weeks.

And Remember……

  • There will be $10 STD testing at Mary Walker from April 7th-9th. And the first 15 people can get a free STD test.
  • And always practice safe sex