Youth and Sexually Transmitted Disease
- Although nearly all (83%) sexually experienced teen women have used some form of contraception,15 STDs continue to be at epidemic levels among youth.
- Young adults (age 15-24) contract about 10 million new STDs each year, costing about $8 billion in direct medical costs.16
- About 40% of sexually active teen girls (aged 14-19) have at least one STD. 17
- Half of all new STDs are found among youth, aged 15-24, although they only represent 1/4 of the sexually experienced population.18
- The four most common STDs among teen girls are (in order): HPV, chlamydia, trichomoniasis, herpes, and gonorrhea.19
- Herpes and HPV can be easily transmitted even with the use of a condom because they can be spread by skin-to-skin contact.20
- Young adults (15-24) account for more than half of all reported cases of chlamydia and gonorrhea.21
- Most STDs are present without any symptoms.22
- The annual number of new infections is roughly equal among young men and young women, but women bear the burden of most of the negative consequences from STDs.23
- Gonorrhea is considered an urgent threat because it is showing resistance to the last line of antibiotics usually used to treat it.24
- Although the majority of teens are not sexually active, those who are, are at great risk for contracting or transmitting an STD.
14CDC (2018). Youth Online High School YRBS: 2017. Atlanta: author.
16CDC (2013) Fact Sheet: Incidence, Prevalence and Cost of STIs in the US. Accessed at http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats/STI-Estimates-Fact-Sheet-Feb-2013.pdf
17Forhan, S. E., Gottlieb, S. L., Sternberg, M. R., Xu, F., Datta, S. D., McQuillan, G. M., et al. (2009). Prevalence of sexually transmitted infections among female adolescents aged 14 to 19 in the United States. Pediatrics, 124(6), 1505-1512. Workowski, K. A., & Bolan, G. A. (2015). Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines, 2015. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 64(3). Retrieved May 4, 2016, from http://www.cdc.gov/std/tg2015/tg-2015-print.pdf.
18CDC. Sexually Transmitted Diseases: Adolescents and Young Adults. 2018. cdc.gov/std/life-stagespopulations/adolescents-youngadults.htm
19CDC: (2014) 2013 Sexually Transmitted Diseases. STDs in adolescents and young adults. Accessed March 18, 2015 at http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats13/adol.htm
20Centers for Disease Control. ( 2017) Genital Herpes – CDC fact sheet. Accessed February 2018 at http://www. cdc.gov/std/herpes/stdfact-herpes.htm Centers for Disease Control. (2017) Genital HPV infection – Fact sheet. Accessed February 2018 at http://www.cdc.gov/std/hpv/stdfact-hpv.htm
21CDC. Sexually Transmitted Diseases: Adolescents and Young Adults. 2018. cdc.gov/std/life-stagespopulations/adolescents-youngadults.htm CDC. (2016) Sexually Transmitted Diseases Surveillance, STDS in Adolescents and Young Adults accessed April 2018 at https://www.cdc.gov/std/stats16/adolescents.htm
22World Health Organization. (2013) Sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Accessed at http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs110/en/Workowski, K. A., & Bolan, G. A. (2015). Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines, 2015. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 64(3). Retrieved May 4, 2016, from http://www.cdc.gov/std/tg2015/tg-2015-print.pdf.
23CDC (2013) Fact Sheet: Incidence, Prevalence and Cost of STIs in the US. Accessed at http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats/STI-Estimates-Fact-Sheet-Feb-2013.pdf CDC (2016). Sexually Transmitted Diseases. STDs in Adolescents and Young Adults Accessed March 2018 at https://www.cdc.gov/std/stats16/adolescents.htm CDC Fact Sheet: Information for Teens and Young Adults: Staying Healthy and Preventing STDs Accessed at https://www.cdc.gov/std/life-stages-populations/stdfact-teens.htm
24White House (2014). National strategy for combating antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Washington, DC. Accessed March 18, 2015 at https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/carb_national_strategy.pdf ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE THREATS IN THE UNITED STATES, 2013 Accessed March 18, 2015 at http://www.cdc.gov/drugresistance/threat-report-2013/pdf/ar-threats-2013-508.pdf