Do I have the flu…or an STD?

By November 8, 2018Health, Men, Sex

FLU twitter

Have you been feeling a little under the weather lately? The weather is getting colder and the cough drops are coming out. It’s a very common time of year to get sick, but don’t be too quick to blame it on the flu. If you are feeling under the weather and are sexually active, you should keep reading. Your symptoms may feel like your usual fall allergies or even the flu, or the dreaded man cold, but they could be signs of an STD. STD symptoms can be confusing and down right deceptive. In fact, many times you may not even have any symptoms. But, when left untreated your STI can turn into an STD, and can cause all kinds of chaos on your body.

 If you are sexually active and have any of the symptoms below, please get tested, they are symptoms shouldn’t ignore:

F E V E R

A fever is one of the ways your body fights infection. A fever could be the result of several different illnesses including gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, herpes, hepatitis A, or even HIV.

F A T I G U E

Don’t be so quick to blame being tired on your holiday stress. Chlamydia and gonorrhea can also cause increased fatigue, as can hepatitis A, B, and C

H E A D A C H E S  

It’s so easy for us to just pop some Tylenol and go on about our day if we have a headache. But headache is also a symptom of HIV, syphilis, and herpes. 

S O R E • T H R O A T

Sore throats are so common this time of year. If you’re anything like me, you are always worried it could be the dreaded strep throat! But your sore throat could also be a symptom of an STD, especially if it was contracted through oral sex.

S W E L L I N G 

  • Lymph nodes: Any infection can cause swollen lymph nodes, including any STD! Don’t ignore this symptom.
  • Testicles: Guys, your testicles shouldn’t be swollen (in fact, you should be checking them every month to make sure they aren’t!). If one or both are swollen, painful, feel heavy, or are purple or red, go get checked.

If you are sexually active and are having some unusual symptoms, you need to have an STI/STD test. Go see your doctor. If you don’t have a doctor, call the local health department. The people there are awesome and can get you tested!

Remember, knowledge is power. So equip yourself with info on how to prevent sexually transmitted infections before they become an issue.

Allison Kyser

References:  cdc.gov, stdcheck.com, mayoclinic.org

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