The US has been grappling with the surging rates of sexually transmitted diseases for a few years now. The situation is getting worse every year with Chlamydia, Syphilis and Gonorrhea topping the list of most common STD infections in the States.
The impact of the STD epidemic needs to be addressed and acknowledged by the masses. Along with general health consequences, it also carries profound societal and economic implications. The adverse effects of this increasing rate of STDs are felt across communities, from straining healthcare systems to affecting personal relationships.
Apart from the fear of STDs, there are numerous reasons behind its escalation. Let’s unravel said reasons and try to understand the core of the issue in this article.
Breaking down 2023 statistics of STD rates in the USA
Another crucial observation from this state is the number of southern cities on the list. Among the top 25 cities with the highest STD rates, 14 of them are the southern cities of the United States.
Furthermore, this year California contributed 13 cities to the rankings, the most from any state.
The data also points towards the disproportionate STD burden across cities. There’s a clear distinction that shows STDs have hit minority racial and ethnic groups the hardest. The non-Hispanic black people account for 32% of Chlamydia, Syphilis, and Gonorrhea infections.
One major reason behind this disproportion in the stats is the result of unawareness about STD tests. People are not well-informed and therefore, fear of STDs still stands to be one of the leading causes.
Factors contributing to the rise in STDs in the United States
When we take a closer look at this concerning scenario in the United States, it speaks volumes. There is not just one reason behind this growing STD rate but multiple factors. Below are some of these factors because of which STDs are up in the USA:-
Changes in sexual behavior
A lot has changed, especially in the lifestyle of American people in the last decade or so. People are now more open to the idea of casual dating which led to their change in sexual behavior.
For example, there’s an immense increase in casual and unprotected sex in the United States which significantly contributed to the rising STD rates.
Prevalence of other factors like dating apps and hookup culture engaged people more towards higher-risk sexual activities.
Stigma and testing hesitancy
Despite having a formal and standardized system for sex communication, there’s a stigma associated with it. People have a phobia of STDs more because of the judgment and societal shaming than the consequences of it.
The stigma even discourages well-read individuals from seeking STD testing and treatment. This hesitation soon results in undiagnosed and untreated infections, perpetuating the spread of STDs.
According to the data by NSDS, as of 2020, 138.543 million people aged 12 and over have illicitly used drugs in their lifetime. This evidently points towards substance abuse, including the opioid crisis which plays a crucial role in the surging STD rates in the United States.
Most of the time, it is seen that drug use leads to high-risk sexual behaviors, such as unprotected sex and sharing needles, which increase the likelihood of contracting and spreading infections like HIV and Hepatitis.
Immediate access to healthcare
Among the CDC’s list of top 25 U.S. cities with the highest STD rates, 17 of them are located in states with healthcare spending below the national average. This shows the inequitable access to healthcare, particularly to marginalized populations.
As a result, limited access to healthcare can hinder the timely diagnosis and treatment of STDs, leaving many individuals at risk of infections without adequate care.
Wealth inequality has been one of the concerning issues in the United States. In these circumstances, individuals are less likely to seek testing and treatment for STDs. This results in a disproportionate burden of STDs on marginalized or lower-income populations.
One reason behind this escalation of STD cases in the USA can be the spread of antibiotic-resistant strains of common STDs like Gonorrhea. A concerning example is the recent rise of extensively drug-resistant (XDR) Gonorrhea strains.
These strains are highly resistant to multiple antibiotics, making treatment more difficult. This may lead to more persistent and severe sexually transmitted infections.
Keep your sexual health in check with Affordable Rapid Testing
We learned about various factors behind the surge of STD rates in the United States of America but what’s more essential is to know how to deal with it. On an individual level, we must step forward in educating ourselves about sexual health and warn others about the same. In doing so, a crucial step is to get an STD tests from the most reliable health center.
One such place is Affordable Rapid Testing, Arizona which provides confidential care. Here, you will get FDA-approved tests with same-day results. Take charge of your sexual health by availing of top-notch, painless and affordable testing services with Affordable Rapid Testing, Arizona. Learn more about them on their official website.