Trouble Getting Pregnant With Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs)?
Sexually transmitted diseases, or STDs, are incredibly common. There are more than 19 million new STD cases every year in the United States, and the CDC reports that by the age of 25, one in two young people will contract some form of a sexually transmitted disease.
Even though STD’s are very common, they are also sometimes embarrassing. No one wants to have an STD. However, what most people do not know is that sexually transmitted diseases can actually be dangerous. They can even put your future fertility at a great risk.
Experts suggest that around 15 to 25 percent of all female infertility cases can be linked back to damage done by a sexually transmitted disease. The problem is, many times, people don’t know that they even have an STD, so they have a hard time getting treatment.
These men and women might try for months or even years to get pregnant with no success, and never have an indication that an STD is what the problem is really. Unfortunately, the damage done to the reproductive system by an STD is not usually reversible, and in some cases can mean permanent infertility.
Chlamydia is a very dangerous sexually transmitted disease. More than 40 percent of all untreated chlamydia cases will damage the fallopian tubes beyond repair, leaving a woman infertile. Likewise, Trichomoniasis, commonly known as “Trich”, can also cause scarring and/or blockage of the fallopian tubes that is not fixable.
Gonorrhea, which is another very common STD, can cause pelvic inflammation, which can lead to trouble getting pregnant. Herpes is another story altogether. While the herpes virus does not actually hinder conception, there are other problems. If a woman with herpes gets pregnant, it can damage the fetus.
If the herpes virus is spread to a newborn, it can actually go to their brain. This can cause breathing problems, shock, coma and even death.
It is very important that if you are trying to conceive, that both partners be checked for sexually transmitted diseases. You might not think you have one, but you never know. It might seem a bit embarrassing to have an STD check done, but it is definitely in your best interest if you are trying to conceive.
The good news is that most STD’s are easily treated, and if caught early enough, will leave no lasting effects on fertility. Just make sure to get checked out, get your partner checked out, and be completely open and honest with your doctor about your medical history.
Ms. Wisniewski has over 15 years experience as a labor and delivery nurse, having also worked previously as a nurse midwife in the Philippines and India. She enjoys empowering women and providing family centered care to women from all cultural and educational backgrounds.
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