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Sexually Transmitted Infections

An STI (Sexually Transmitted Infection) is a bacterial or viral infection which can be spread through sexual contact (not just unprotected sex). STIs can affect anyone and many of them are on the increase.
The best way to know if you have an infection is to get screened. Whilst some STIs have symptoms that you may notice, others have no symptoms at all or symptoms that show up months or years after unprotected sex with an infected partner. If you are sexually active it is recommended that you get tested once a year. If you have had or expecting to have unprotected sex with a new partner it is best to get tested as soon as possible.

The best place to get tested is at a Sexual Health Clinic. Most clinics run drop-in sessions but if you call ahead you may also be able to book an appointment at a time which suits you. Click here to find your nearest sexual health clinic.

Getting screened is quick and easy.  View the video below to see what happens when you visit a sexual health clinic. 

Alternatively, if you live in Greater Manchester you can request a testing kit for gonorrhoea, chlamydia, syphilis and HIV to be posted to your home by following this link:

The best way to avoid STIs is to use a condom every time you have sex. If you are using other contraception to avoid pregnancy it is still a good idea to use a condom as this is the most effective way to avoid STIs. .

Click on the links to find out more about the different STIs, including symptoms and treatments.

Brook – Types of STIs

NHS – Live Well – STIs

The best thing to do if you think you may have an STI is to get tested. This will put your mind at rest, allow you to get treated should you have an STI and allow you to get advice on how to avoid the situation again. 

Click here to find your nearest sexual health clinic.

If left untreated, STIs can cause health problems later in life so it is best to find out that you have an STI as soon as possible and get treated.