Despite many years of campaigns of sexual education and STD awareness, new STD cases are reported to continue to rise. A further announcement by the CDC paints a particularly dire image of sexual health in America, with some diseases reaching ranges not seen for nearly 20 years, and others reaching legitimate all-time highs.
The CDC’s report relies on data from 2017 to 2018, and it shows a shocking number of syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia cases throughout the nation. The information reveals over 115,000 syphilis cases in that period and around 580,000 cases of gonorrhea, which have never seen levels this high since 1991.
The CDC says that a rise of around 3% in chlamydia cases nationwide puts the whole number at over 1.7 million, which is the highest it’s ever been.
Of the three illnesses, syphilis has seen probably the most dramatic gains. Chlamydia’s 3% increase and gonorrhea’s 5% increase both pale in comparison to the incredible 14% spike seen for syphilis. Even worse, the rate of syphilis infections among newborns jumped up a whopping 40% in comparison with the previous year.
Babies who contract syphilis from their mothers are at an incredible risk. Stillbirth and newborn child death are both legitimate risks for anticipating mothers who’ve syphilis, and even when the child survives, it might face severe developmental issues.
The CDC highlights numerous issues that are feeding into the rise of STDs, including decreased use of condoms among young people. Combine that with risk factors similar to drug use and poverty, in addition to reductions in STD awareness programs at both the state and local levels throughout the US, and you’ve got a recipe for record-breaking STD numbers.