If you are sexually active, you can get an STI – even if you practice safe sex most of the time. There are many different STIs and not all of them have obvious symptoms, so there is a chance that you or your partner could have an STI without knowing it. Most STIs are curable and all are treatable. But if left untreated, STIs can have long term effects on your body.
If you are sexually active, it’s important to get an STI test at least once a year, especially if you notice symptoms after having sex without a condom or dental dam; if the condom broke or slipped off during sex; or when you start a new relationship. In most cases, a simple blood or urine sample is all that's needed. Condoms are the easiest, and most effective way, to protect yourself from STIs.
Do I need support when communicating with a health professional?
If you feel uncomfortable about asking questions or talking with your healthcare professionals, having someone there to support you during appointments can help you make difficult decisions and ensure healthcare professionals respect your rights.