Sexually Transmitted Disease STD
Travelling overseas may increase the risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted disease. Holiday & business travel provides opportunities for casual sexual encounters. It is important for everyone to be aware that while the symptoms of these diseases may be trivial, the long-term consequences for the individual & his/her partner at home may be serious.
The only sure way to avoid STDs is to abstain from sexual contact altogether. Safer sexual practices such as using condoms may help prevent infection. Antibiotics will not prevent infection.
HIV/AIDS is a global problem of enormous proportions. AIDS is caused by a Human Immuno-Deficiency virus (HIV). Infection with HIV is more common than AIDS. There is no vaccine or cure for AIDS.
It is contracted most frequently by unprotected sex with an infected person.
It can also be transmitted by penetration of the skin with infected implements; transfusions of HIV infected blood in some countries & from infected mother to child during childbirth or breast-feeding.
HIV/AIDS is not spread by everyday social contact or through insect bites.
Other commonly occurring sexually transmitted diseases include gonorrhoea, syphilis, hepatitis B, chancroid, herpes simplex, the papilloma virus & chlamydia. Practices used to reduce the risk of HIV transmission will also reduce the risk of these other diseases.
Although HIV is the most serious of the STDs, others may have long-term consequences such as infertility. In South East Asia a more resistant form of gonorrhoea is widespread, & chancroid is commonly diagnosed in Africa.