Shocking Epidemic: Rate of STDs Among Teens Continues to Rise
When your kids were young, you watched over them every second of the day. You bandaged their scrapes, soothed their tears and did everything that you could to make sure that they stayed happy and safe. You would probably like to do the same things today, but now that your kids are getting older, you have less control over what goes on in their lives. This can be a little scary, especially considering some of the activities that teenagers are partaking in these days.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases are On the Rise
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recently reported that in 2006, more than a million young people were infected with a sexually transmitted disease. More disturbingly, in 2012, it was shown that the STD rates have continued to rise. One possible reason for this is that many young women are now taking the contraceptive pill, which can sometimes encourage them to think that skipping a condom is okay.
The Importance of Having “The Talk”
Talking to your teenagers about safe sex might be one of the most uncomfortable conversations you’ll ever have to engage in as a parent, but it’s also one of the most important. A survey conducted by the Department of Health and Human Services found that over 80% of teenagers who had been talked to about sex were told that abstinence was the way to go, yet many of them received no instruction when it came to practicing safe sex.
As much as you probably want your teen to wait until marriage, it’s important to be realistic. The fact is, some teens will have sex, and scolding them over it might create more distance between the two of you. When you sit down to have the talk, be sure to use a non-judgmental tone of voice and be open to anything. However sexually active your teen may have been in the past, it’s up to both of you to deal with the consequences and move forward.
Confidential Testing Can Help Spare Embarrassment
If it turns out that your teen has had sex without proper protection, your next step is to get him or her tested. This process can be both embarrassing and frightening, which is one reason that many teens don’t seek testing on their own. If you want a way to quickly get your teen tested and make sure that the results stay off of his or her permanent medical records, consider using a private lab.
You can easily order your test from places online then take your teen to their nearest lab facility to have blood drawn. The results are usually available quickly and everything is kept 100 percent confidential, sparing you the worry of embarrassment.
There are many difficult things about raising teenagers, but the hardest part is probably the realization that your babies are growing up. You can’t make every decision for them anymore, but with a little guidance, wisdom and compassion, you can help them learn from their mistakes and begin to make smart decisions on their own.
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