According to data from England’s Health Service the NHS, the amount of people seeking help from dedicated sexual health clinics is falling year on year.
Despite there being sharp rises in STD rates and some becoming resistant, especially with gonorrhoea, only 1.26 million people in England looked for help. This is down almost five percent from 2015.
This sounds like a very small number taking into account there are up to 3 million students currently registered to study in the UK. With their local dedicated sexual health clinics being a place for free condoms, you would think at least some of them would have made the trip. And get this, among under 25s, there were 94,461 less contacts!
The Family Planning Association (FPA) has said the figure could mean that fewer people were able to access services with clinics closing down due to the budget cuts.
FPA chief Executive Natika Halil has had this to say: ‘We question how much support young people are getting through sex and relationships education, which is still not statutory, to become confident and competent users of sexual health services.’ And condoms, it seems.
Common sense tells you that there should be a correlation in clinic visits when STD rates are rising, but this is not the case. One thing that is also very concerning is the fact young people may not be getting the required amount of safe sex education, and most are not even taking a visit to the clinic to stock up on condoms.
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Health officials the world over are starting to warn of the dangers of an STI which is now becoming resistant to treatment. The disease has been cured rather easily with a single dose of antibiotic in the past, but fast forward to 2016 and the bacteria that causes the disease has been evolving to develop resistance to Doctor’s orders.
The World Health Organisation has had this to say: “[the resistance is] raising concerns about the eventual development of untreatable gonococcal infections with serious sexual and reproductive health consequences”. This comes off the heels of a warning issues by experts during 2015
“We are concerned about the emergence of strains that are resistant to the antibiotic treatment options currently available.”
The sexually transmitted disease can result in serious discomfort, pelvic inflammatory disease and even infertility. Symptoms can go undetected among 1 in 10 infected men and half of infected women. A green or yellow discharge from the genitals, discomfort urinating and irregular bleeding between periods are usual warning signs, so if these are showing for you, please visit your local GP as soon as you can!
What causes further alarm is the recent outbreak of a strain of resistant Gonorrhoea known as HL-AziR within Universities in the North-West of England. Dr Gwenda Hughes, Head of the Sexually Transmitted Infections Section at Public Health England said: “Diagnoses of gonorrhoea in England have risen sharply in recent years and we are concerned about the emergence of strains that are resistant to the antibiotic treatment options currently available.”
Public Health England signed off on their update on the situation with this: “Our advice remains the same; it is far better to avoid getting or passing on gonorrhoea in the first place and everyone can significantly reduce their risk by using condoms with all new and casual partners.”