Health can be defined as the absence of disease, but this definition is basic. Health is not just physical; mental and emotional well-being are also important. To achieve this, humans need access to shelter, fresh food, clean water, income, and social justice.
To achieve good health, people must live in a stable ecosystem with sustainable resources. This requires living in an organized society with a fair legal system that is ideally not at war. The healthier a nation, the more productive and economically efficient it becomes. Therefore, governments invest money in health promotion, which is the process of enabling individuals to increase control over their own health and discourage behaviors that might be harmful to health.
This is done by encouraging consumer behaviors that are most likely to improve their health. It involves the population as a whole in the context of their everyday lives, rather than focusing on people at risk for specific diseases, and is directed toward action on the determinants or causes of health. The issues discussed in this paper are about sexual health. Sexual health is defined by the World Health Organization as “the state of physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being related to sexuality; it is not merely the absence of disease, dysfunction, and infirmity. Sexual health requires a positive, respectful approach to sexuality and sexual relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination, and violence. For sexual health to be attained and maintained, the sexual rights of all persons must be respected, protected, and fulfilled.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) are infectious diseases passed from one person to another during sexual contact,” according to WHO in 1975. STDs are transmitted by infectious agents, which can be microscopic bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi, and single-celled organisms called protozoa. These organisms thrive in warm, moist environments in the body, such as the genital area, mouth, and throat. Most STDs are spread during sex, including oral sex. Some STDs are passed from a mother to her child before birth, during childbirth, or after birth through infected breast milk. This is known as vertical transmission. Some viral STDs, especially AIDS, may be transmitted through blood contact, such as open wounds, between people who share infected needles or received through a transfusion of infected blood.
Some people mistakenly believe that STDs can be transmitted through shaking hands or other casual contact, or through contact with inanimate objects such as clothing or toilet seats. STDs that are bacterial in origin can be cured, meaning the infection can be completely removed from the body, with a single dose of antibiotics. However, viral STDs such as Herpes and Acquired Immunity Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) cannot be cured. People with these diseases remain infected for their entire lives.
Those most at risk for contracting STDs are people who have unprotected sex, meaning sex without using some form of contraception, those who have multiple partners, and those whose sex partners include drug users who share needles. Studies, such as the Journal of Paediatric and Adolescent Gynaecology (2004), have shown that young people between the ages of 16 and 24 are at the highest risk of catching STDs compared to older adults because younger people are more likely to have multiple sexual partners rather than a single, long-term relationship. Young people may also be more likely to have unprotected sex and may feel embarrassed to tell their sexual partners that they are infected. Additionally, young people may feel embarrassed or unable to seek medical attention for STDs. This means that they are not only more likely to pass the disease to other young people, but they also have a greater risk of suffering the long-term consequences of untreated STDs.
People who do not know they are infected risk infecting their sexual partners and, in some cases, their unborn children. If left untreated, these diseases may cause debilitating pain or destroy the person’s ability to produce children. One trait of this disease is that it can present no symptoms until well established or not at all. Only 12% of the people who are infected experience symptoms, so individuals who are infected are often unaware they have Chlamydia and pass it on.
In Wales, Chlamydia is the most common STD. It is a bacterial infection caused by the Chlamydia Trachomatis bacterium.