Sexually transmitted diseases are common infections- that’s something that should cross your mind first when you test positive. You are not alone, and you will never be alone because according to the centers for disease control and prevention, 1 in every five people has STD.
Being bold enough to go for STD testing should motivate you and give you the courage you beat the condition because few people can take that bold step. STDs are common because most people don’t go for STD screening, and since most STDs are asymptomatic, they pass them to their partners without knowing.
Before we dive deeper into STDs and anxiety, let’s learn what STDs are and their examples.
1. What are STDs?
Sexually transmitted diseases, also known as STIs, occur due to infection by bloodborne pathogens like bacteria and viruses and are transmitted through sexual contact.
These infections mostly affect the genitals but can also occur in the mouth and anus through oral anal and oral sex. They affect both genders and are common among teens and young adults.
The most common STDs include;
- Genital herpes
- Genital warts
- Hepatitis B
2. How to cope with anxiety after a positive STD test
Positive STD test results can be heartbreaking and sometimes lead to depression, especially if it is incurable STDs like HIV. But, you should know that these conditions are just like other diseases, and you can manage and treat them. Below are some ways to manage the anxiety of being STD-positive.
a. Accept the situation
The first step of relieving yourself of anxiety after testing positive is acceptance. Accept that you are already in it, and look at how you can manage and treat the infections. Fortunately, most of these infections can be treated and cured. Talk to your doctor to prescribe the appropriate medicine, work on your diet and live a healthy life like the rest.
b. Understand that you are not alone
STDs are prevalent, especially in youths, and you must know that at the time you test positive, there is a possibility that hundreds of thousands of people worldwide have also tested positive because every single day, millions of people get STI diagnoses.
c. Engage in activities that might blow your mind away
Testing positive for STD can throw you off balance both physically and mentally, and stop thinking about it too much; you should engage in self-care practices. This can help reduce depression, shame, guilt, and embarrassment.
Below are some of the ways you can take your mind off this ordeal;
- Go for a walk or run
- Engage in creative activities like painting, singing, etc.
- Take a long shower
- Go for a nature walk
You should incorporate these practices into your daily routine, check the ones that blend well, and practice them regularly. Choose a practice that is easy and doable; otherwise, they can take you back to your anxiety state or even worse.
d. Be open
When you test positive for STD, you want to open up to your friend or partner to help you carry the load through sharing and advice. Though it can be a challenge because of embarrassment and shame, you should strive to open up and communicate to eliminate stress and anxiety.
Opening up to your partners will also take the initiative of going for testing and can help you both to take precautions while having sex.
Getting a positive STD test result can be traumatizing and can cause anxiety. Therefore, it is essential to know tips to help you overcome this anxiety.