These are the most common bacterial STDs. If you stay on top of your sexual health, they aren't a big deal. Ignore them at your own risk.
Bacterial STDs can be treated with antibiotics and completely eradicated from a person’s body. Viral STDs -- which tend to start with the letter ‘H’ -- cannot be cured, although treatments can mitigate outbreaks and effects. Many STDs do not have immediate symptoms and that is why it is important to get tested regularly if you're sexually active.
Gonorrhea and Chlamydia are bacterial STDs that are similar in nature.
- Both are transmitted via oral, vaginal or anal sex.
- Symptoms for men include a watery white drip from the penis, the need to urinate more often and the sensation of burning or pain while urinating. Both can be found in either the mouth or in the rectum.
- Both can be treated with antibiotics.
- Using condoms can greatly reduce the likelihood of getting chlamydia or gonorrhea.
Syphilis is a bacterial STD that affects the body in three stages.
- It is transmitted through direct contact with a syphilis sore, via oral, vaginal or anal sex.
- The first stage is marked by painless, red-brown sores (called chancres) that appear on the hands, genitals, and/or mouth that last between 1-5 weeks.
- The second stage is marked by a skin rash and lesions on mucous membrane that appear along with flu-like symptoms.
- The third stage, called latent syphilis, often appears 10-20 years after an untreated infection occurs, and causes internal organ damage, especially in the nervous system.
- Penicillin shots cure syphilis. If you are allergic to penicillin, there are alternative antibiotics.
- Getting early treatment can reduce the most serious consequences to the body.
- Sometimes, the first treatment doesn't completely cure the infection. It's very important to have several repeat blood tests to make sure the infection is completely gone.