Adolescents and STIs
The stigma associated with sexually transmitted infections (STIs) often prevents people from discussing STIs and from getting treatment when they are infected. But STIs are a serious problem in the United States, especially among youth.
- Young people ages 15-24 experience almost half of the nation’s 19 million annual STIs.
- One in four young women ages 15-19 has an STI.
- STIs cost the U.S. health care system $15.9 billion each year.
- Left untreated, STIs can lead to infertility and even death.
STIs are preventable: condoms protect against most; the HPV vaccine provides protection from four types of HPV that cause cancer; and abstinence provides 100 percent protection. Young people must be provided with the tools they need to protect themselves: complete, accurate information and access to health care services and contraception/condoms.
Read on to learn more about STIs in the United States.
Adolescents and Sexually Transmitted Infections (Advocates for Youth)
2009 Sexually Transmitted Diseases Surveillance (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)