What percent of sexually active people will get an STD?

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are infections that are spread through sexual contact. STDs can affect anyone who is sexually active, regardless of age, gender, or sexual orientation. According to the World Health Organization, more than one million new cases of STDs are acquired every day worldwide. In this article, we will explore the prevalence of STDs and answer the question of what percent of sexually active people will get an STD.

Prevalence of STDs

The prevalence of STDs varies depending on the type of STD and the population being studied. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were over 2.5 million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis reported in the United States in 2019. This represents the highest number of reported cases of these three STDs in the United States to date. The CDC also estimates that there are nearly 20 million new cases of STDs each year in the United States.

In addition to the United States, STDs are a significant public health concern globally. The World Health Organization reports that more than 376 million new cases of curable sexually transmitted infections occur worldwide each year, with chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis being the most common. These numbers only account for curable STDs and do not include viral STDs such as HIV, herpes, and hepatitis B and C.

Risk Factors for STDs

Certain risk factors can increase a person’s likelihood of contracting an STD. These risk factors include:

  • Having unprotected sex (without a condom)
  • Having sex with multiple partners
  • Having sex with someone who has an STD
  • Having sex at a young age (under 25)
  • Having a weakened immune system
  • Using drugs or alcohol before having sex

It is important to note that even people who engage in low-risk sexual behaviors can still contract an STD. Condoms can significantly reduce the risk of contracting an STD, but they are not foolproof.

Prevention of STDs

The most effective way to prevent the spread of STDs is through abstinence (not having sex). However, this is not a realistic option for many people. Other ways to prevent the spread of STDs include:

  • Using condoms consistently and correctly
  • Limiting the number of sexual partners
  • Getting tested for STDs regularly
  • Avoiding sex with partners who have symptoms of an STD
  • Discussing STD testing and history with sexual partners

It is also important to note that some STDs can be spread through non-sexual means, such as sharing needles or coming into contact with infected bodily fluids. Therefore, it is essential to practice safe behaviors in all areas of life.

What Percent of Sexually Active People Will Get an STD?

It is difficult to determine an exact percentage of sexually active people who will contract an STD because the risk varies depending on the individual and the behaviors they engage in. However, studies have shown that a significant number of sexually active people will contract an STD at some point in their lives.

One study published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases estimated that by age 25, half of all sexually active people will have contracted an STD. By age 50, the estimate increases to 80%. Another study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health found that nearly 1 in 4 sexually active adolescent females will contract an STD within the first two years of having sex.

STDs are a significant public health concern that affects millions of people worldwide. While the exact percentage of sexually active people who will contract an STD is difficult to determine.