If you are sexually active — especially with multiple partners — you are putting yourself at risk of contracting an STI (sexually transmitted infection). You are even more likely to contract an STI if you have unprotected sex. There are many STIs that could dramatically affect your well-being, such as gonorrhea, chlamydia, or HIV. You should call an STI clinic in Montreal for screening if you suspect you have contracted one of these diseases — but many people are unsure of what symptoms they should be looking for. Here are some common symptoms to be aware of.
1. Discharge or Bleeding
Bleeding or discharge from the reproductive regions can be quite alarming for men or women. The discharge can be yellow, white, or even green, and will have a foul odour. Blood may also be present in the discharge. Women should be especially watchful for bleeding that occurs between periods. These alarming symptoms are among the easiest to spot, but should be addressed right away.
2. Pain in the Reproductive Area
Pain and irritation around the reproductive organs are also common among those who have contracted an STI. Many individuals experience a strong itching sensation, which can also contribute to a painful burning during urination. Men will often experience testicular pain, while both men and women may have pain during bowel movements. Depending on the type of STI that has been contracted, painful sores may appear around the genitals. Swollen lymph nodes can also add to the soreness.
While rashes and bumps in the genital area are commonly associated with STIs, you shouldn’t overlook rashes in other areas. Some STIs will cause rashes to appear on the hands, feet, or other parts of the body. If the rash is accompanied by a fever, you should consult with a doctor immediately — this may be an early sign of HIV.
4. Painful Intercourse
Painful intercourse is a common sign of an STI in women. It should be noted that some women have other medical conditions not related to their sexual activity that can contribute to painful intercourse. However, if you have not experienced pain during sex in the past and are suddenly experiencing such symptoms, there is a good chance you have contracted an STI.
If you have experienced any of these symptoms, don’t delay in getting a screening from a competent medical professional. Catching an STI early on won’t just help you avoid spreading the disease to others — it can also halt the progression of the disease so you can avoid long-term consequences like infertility or cancer.