STD rates are up to three times the national average in Chicago
Research has shown that a diagnosis of an STD has a significant impact on quality of life, to the point of reducing the ability to cope with everyday problems. People with sexually transmitted diseases are therefore at a higher risk of suffering from anxiety, depression, low self-esteem and social isolation. Sometimes these negative psychological effects are stronger than the physical impact of the disease, preventing people from forming lasting romantic relationships. For STDs that have no known cure, such as herpes, the emotional toll that a diagnosis can bring is devastating. Even perfectly curable STDs, like chlamydia, are scarier than deadly diseases.
And yet sexually transmitted diseases are extremely prevalent, especially among the young population. In Chicago, STI rates are double to triple the national average, according to data from the Chicago Department of Public Health. Thus, Chicagoans are twice as likely to have chlamydia and three times as likely to have gonorrhea as residents of other parts of the United States, which should come as no surprise given that more than one the city is bigger, the greater the diversity. origins and sexual practices. According to the researchers, the highest infection rates are found in the southern and western neighborhoods of Chicago. STIs seem to be diagnosed more often in women than in men, but scientists say it happens because women are screened for infections more often, while STIs in men often go unnoticed. The most common sexually transmitted diseases among Chicagoans are gonorrhea, chlamydia, HPV, and genital herpes.
Considering the high rate of infection, the fact that STDs are still stigmatized is very surprising. Research has consistently shown that STDs are surrounded by irrational stigma, which is extremely damaging to mental health. Many people need years after diagnosis to return to the dating scene – if ever they do. But being diagnosed with an STD doesn’t necessarily mean living alone. Many infections are treatable, and even if they aren’t (like with herpes, for example), there are ways that partners can continue to have great sex lives. Certain medications can minimize the risk of transmission, as can avoiding sex during flare-ups.
In recent years, there has been more awareness about sexually transmitted diseases, but, despite everything, many people prefer to avoid talking about the diagnosis for fear of being misjudged. This has led to the emergence of a new wave of inclusive dating platforms designed specifically for users with STDs. For example, herpesdatingsites.com is a platform where people can read reviews for the best herpes dating communities. Since all of the users of these websites are also singles with an HSV-1 or HSV-2 diagnosis, you don’t have to worry about being judged or having uncomfortable conversations if you are not. still ready. It can also help you regain self-confidence after a diagnosis and gradually get you back into the dating game.
Some of these herpes dating sites have millions of active members, which begs the question: when will the stigma go away?