I know teens are having sex, but I just heard some disturbing news. One out of every four girls, aged 14 to 19, has an STI. That means more than 3 million teenage girls nationwide are infected, according to a study from the federal Centers For Disease Control and Prevention. The study tested for four STIs and found that 18 percent of the girls had HPV, the virus responsible for causing genital warts and certain types of cervical cancer. Chlamydia affected 4 percent, trichomoniasis (a common parasite) affected 2.5 percent, and 2 percent of the girls were infected with herpes.
This of course is really sad news, but lack of education is mostly to blame. Girls and anyone who's sexually active for that matter, need to know that STIs can be passed through oral sex just as much as they can with vaginal intercourse. They need to know how to protect themselves by using male and female condoms, and dental dams. Men and women also need to get tested for STIs before becoming sexually intimate. It's recommended that anyone who is sexually active and not in a monogamous relationship get the Gardasil vaccine to prevent this virus to reduce the chance of developing certain types of cervical cancer. Hopefully these scary statistics can help protect people from passing STIs.