Ways Sexually Transmitted Diseases Can Be Spread – Without Having Sex

Ways Sexually Transmitted Diseases Can Be Spread – Without Having Sex

One of the most common misconceptions about sexually transmitted diseases is that they are only spread to other people through having sex, more specifically, through having vaginal intercourse with an infected person. This could not be farther from the truth.

In reality, there are ways to get an STD that don’t involve sex at all. Learn about what they are here, and then use this knowledge, along with other protection methods, like STD testing, for safe sex.

Getting an STD Is Possible Without Sex: 4 Ways it Can Happen

1.     Normal Kissing

Kissing can absolutely spread one type of STD – type I herpes. This disease is marked by clusters of sores around the lips and mouth. It can be present in a person without them even knowing it, and it can be spread in many cases without the presence of sores. In addition, in some cases, type I herpes can cause genital herpes.

Though it can be transmitted without any signs or symptoms in the infected person, herpes is most often spread through skin-to-skin contact with someone who has the tell-tale sores near the lips and mouth. These will look like small, fluid-filled blisters, grouped together in clusters. Even if they are crusted or scabbing over, this is still a sign of herpes.

2.     Indirect Contact with an Infected Person

Some STDs are more likely to be spread through indirect contact than others. While lots of viruses and infections cannot live outside the body long enough to make an impact, others, like trichomoniasis (more commonly called “trich”), can live on damp surfaces, like a wet towel, for up to an hour. Sharing towels or clothing that may touch the genitals with an infected person is thus an easy way to pass on trich.

Sharing razors is another possible way to spread STDs through indirect contact, though it is far less likely. Razors can pierce or break the skin, which makes it easier to mix blood if the razor is shared – consider if an infected person nicked themselves, but didn’t clean off the razor well. The next person who used that razor then would be at risk for infection. STDs like hepatitis A, B, and C or HIV can be spread in this manner.

3.     Oral or Anal Sex (Sex Without Penetration)

Just because both oral and anal sex does not involve genital-to-genital contact or vaginal penetration doesn’t mean that one can’t contract an STD through either of these sexual activities. Infections can still be spread by mouth, by hand-to-genital contact, or through broken skin (even a tiny scratch counts). Plus, there are some viruses that are not preventable with the use of a condom, like herpes or human papillomavirus (HPV).

4.     Contact with Contaminated Food

Some viruses can be spread if an infected person contaminates food they are serving or preparing by not washing their hands after using the restroom. Especially for viruses like hepatitis A, this is a possibility.

In What Other Ways Are Sexually Transmitted Diseases Spread?

Of course, sexual intercourse is the number one way STDs are spread from person to person. This includes both protected and unprotected sex since a condom does not protect against all STDs, and it is never a 100 percent guarantee.

Other kinds of intimate sexual contact can also facilitate the spread of STDs, many of which have no symptoms and may go undetected for years. This can lead to all kinds of problems, such as increased risk for cancer, infertility, and other reproductive problems for women. For peace of mind as well as safe sex, it’s best to get STD testing in Frisco, TX.

STD Testing and Other Protection Methods

Getting STD tested in Plano, TX, and Frisco, TX is the best way to know whether or not a person is infected. That way, they and their partner(s) know definitively one way or another, which is better than wondering and not knowing. It is also far less risky.

STD tests are easy to get. One can go to their regular doctor and ask to get tested, or one can head to their local health center or Planned Parenthood. Usually, all that is required for testing is a blood sample or a skin swab. A quick doctor or health center visit is all it takes, which will provide immense relief from worry as well as a direction to take.

Other ways to stay protected from STDs include condoms and abstaining from sex altogether. Of course, the only way to stay 100 percent safe, and completely reduce the risk, is the latter choice: abstinence. Those people with partners, however, can agree to a monogamous relationship, and before ever engaging in sexual activity, both parties should get tested.

Consider the Risks Vs. the Benefits

Those who consistently find themselves engaging in risky sexual behavior should ask themselves a few questions: what are they willing to risk for the sake of sex and intimacy? Should these things be more important than their own health and well-being? Additionally, what can help people make less risky, spontaneous, or ill-advised choices is staying away from alcohol and drugs, because they will be far more clear-headed, and able to think before they leap.

It may be surprising to many people to learn about all of the ways STDs can be spread without engaging in sex. Everything from kissing to oral/anal sex, to indirect contact can facilitate spreading a virus or infection.

Sex should never be taken lightly; instead, people need to learn the best ways to be safe while indulging in intimacy, how to protect themselves from STDs, how to protect their partners, and when to get STD testing (the answer: if one has never done it and is sexually active, as soon as possible).

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