Debunking 6 Myths About Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI)

Prev1 of 7

We’ve talked about emergency contraception and birth control methods, but how much do Malaysians actually know about sexually transmitted infections (STI)?

Remember back in school when we used to feel overwhelmed with all the information that we learned about our sexual health? Personally, I don’t remember feeling that way because I did not learn this in school. In fact, this topic is considered a taboo in our conservative society, making any discussion about sex-related topics extremely rare and frowned upon.

However, there’s still a need to address the topic despite the social stigma. According to a survey done by Durex Malaysia, 31 per cent of Malaysians assumed that those living with STI always looked extremely thin or unhealthy, which is untrue. Not to mention, a study involving 1,071 young Malaysians in 2015 also reported that one in 10 Malaysians “would not get tested and treated even if they have been exposed to STI risks as it is ‘shameful’”.This shows that there are still many people who don’t know much and don’t have enough knowledge about STI and their sexual health.

We spoke to Dr Meneka Kumaran, a resident physician who focuses on women’s health from Dr. Tan & Partners Clinic, to learn more and clarify facts about STIs.

But first, what’s the difference between STI and STD?

We often use ‘Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI)’ and ‘Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD)’ interchangeably. An infection is often the first step of a disease and this is the stage where the bacteria or viruses start to invade the body and start multiplying. From a medical perspective, STI and STD are classified under the same category. “There are myths going around saying that the symptoms for STI can be seen while the symptoms for STD can’t be seen. Although people might choose to classify both diseases that way, in reality, they are referring to the same thing. The screening done for STD and STI are the same,” says Dr Meneka. With more than one million STIs acquired every day worldwide, it’s important to be aware of the truth about STIs. Before you hop onto an unreliable forum on the internet and look for the information that you need, know that there are many myths out there that can damage your health. That’s why we’re here to debunk those myths and share with you some real facts that you might not know about STIs.

Prev1 of 7

, , , ,