Preventing Sexually Transmitted Diseases
A sexually transmitted disease (STD) is an infection that is spread during sexual contact with another person. This includes touching, since some STDs can be spread from skin-to-skin contact.
In general, STDs are highly preventable. Almost 20 million new STDs are diagnosed each year in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). However, a large number of those infections could be avoided if people made different decisions about their sexual health.
The only guaranteed method to prevent STDs is to abstain from all sexual contact. This may not a practical solution for everyone. Fortunately, there are steps people can take to limit their risk of exposure.