When it comes to sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), certain states generally have higher infection rates. Medical researchers who study the data are generally attempting to detect certain patterns so that public outreach programs can be initiated. When men and women can be properly educated on how to arrest the spread of these diseases, the population as a whole can be made healthier. Here is a brief look at the five states with the highest STD rates. The states themselves were chosen based on official information from the Center for Disease Control.
Chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis are the STDs that offer the most insight into how people are living their lives in certain areas. In Louisiana, the rates for all three are quite high. Near the larger urban centers, especially Baton Rouge, Shreveport, and New Orleans, the measurable rates are well above average. Although health workers are doing their best to stress the importance of abstinence, the younger generation likely does not recognize the risks associated with unprotected sex. Through better educational measures, health agencies hope to make a dent in these figures over the coming years and decades.
It is interesting that the highest STD rates are all found in southern states. Experts are not quite sure why this is true, but they are doing their best to contain the spread of these diseases. Alabama’s largest cities include Mobile, Montgomery, Birmingham, and Tuscaloosa. When it comes to syphilis, in fact, Alabama is second only to Louisiana. Syphilis has certain negative symptoms that can be quite serious if not dealt with in time. Women can even become sterile from the disease. Luckily, there are chemical compounds that are quite effective at getting rid of this infection.
Mississippi is the third state on this unenviable list, and it is yet another entity that lies in the Deep South. Though Jackson is the capital city and the preeminent urban area, other large towns are scattered throughout the state. Mississippi, according to the Center for Disease Control, has particular problems with both gonorrhea and chlamydia. These infections can generally be cured. There are subtle signs, however, that gonorrhea is becoming resistant to the drugs that have long been used to eliminate it. Gonorrhea often presents in males as burning during urination and penile discharge.
4) South Carolina
In South Carolina, which is also near the top of the STD list, the large urban areas are generally limited to Charleston and Columbia. One of the ways in which educators hope to provide students with vital information is through high school health classes. When younger folks understand that a range of sexual problems can be prevented when protection is used, the spread of STDs might be finally gotten under control. Because the diseases are especially prevalent among people under thirty, it is essential that young individuals get the proper message before it is too late.
The fifth and final state on our list is Georgia. The city of Atlanta, which is both the state capital and the largest urban area, is the cultural touchstone of the southern United States. Unfortunately, Georgia also has STD rates that are well above the national average. Though there are some signs that the rates are decreasing just a bit, the numbers are still high enough to put the state on this list.
In the end, the five states with the highest STD rates are all located in the southern region of the country. Though public health officials are working to combat the afflictions, there is still much work to be done. With the proper education, it is hoped that the rates will soon decrease.
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Author Byline: Rudy Towers is a public health manager and guest author at MPH Online.