When kids go off to college, the opportunities can be limitless. College is a whirlwind of learning, cramming for exams, making new friends and gaining new experiences. However, many of these new experiences aren’t related to school. College students drink alcohol at record rates and often have casual romantic and sexual relationships with many different people. While technically they are adults, college students have not yet reached full maturity in the brain when it comes to making decisions. That means that they often don’t think about the risks associated with their behavior.
STDs on College Campuses
Estimates suggest that about one in four college students have an STD, and half of the new cases of STDs each year occur in individuals between the ages of 15 and 24. Clearly STDs are a problem on college campuses. Why? As we said before, even though college students are adults under the law, in many ways they are still just kids. As smart as they may be, certain parts of maturity, including risk assessment and decision making, are still not fully developed. Another aspect is the lack of education about STD prevention. It is essential for college students to understand the risks associated with unprotected sex and to understand how to minimize those risks.
STD Testing for Better Collegiate Health
STD infections are preventable diseases. The CDC recommends that all sexually active college students get STD testing in order to be more informed about their own health and to prevent spreading STDs to their partners. Getting tested is the first step in preventing the spread of STDs, because without STD testing you may be spreading an STD without even realizing it. Furthermore, getting STD testing also helps college students to get the treatments they need. Getting tested on a yearly basis is a good place to start.