Chlamydia is a common STD that can infect both men and women. It can cause serious, permanent damage to a woman’s reproductive system, making it difficult or impossible for her to get pregnant later on. Chlamydia can also cause a potentially fatal ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy that occurs outside the womb).

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Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) that can infect both men and women. It can cause infections in the genitals, rectum, and throat. It is a very common infection, especially among young people ages 15-24 years.You can get gonorrhea by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has gonorrhea. A pregnant woman with gonorrhea can give the infection to her baby during childbirth.

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Genital herpes is an STD caused by two types of viruses. The viruses are called herpes simplex type 1 and herpes simplex type 2.Genital herpes is common in the United States. In the United States, about one out of every six people aged 14 to 49 years have genital herpes.You can get herpes by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the disease. Fluids found in a herpes sore carry the virus, and contact with those fluids can cause infection. You can also get herpes from an infected sex partner who does not have a visible sore or who may not know he or she is infected because the virus can be released through your skin and spread the infection to your sex partner(s).

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Hepatitis B is transmitted when blood, semen, or another body fluid from a person infected with the Hepatitis B virus enters the body of someone who is not infected. This can happen through sexual contact; sharing needles, syringes, or other drug-injection equipment; or from mother to baby at birth. For some people, hepatitis B is an acute, or short-term, illness but for others, it can become a long-term, chronic infection.

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HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It weakens a person’s immune system by destroying important cells that fight disease and infection. No effective cure exists for HIV. But with proper medical care, HIV can be controlled. Some groups of people in the United States are more likely to get HIV than others because of many factors, including their sex partners, their risk behaviors, and where they live. This section will give you basic information about HIV, such as how it’s transmitted, how you can prevent it, and how to get tested for HIV.

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HPV is a group of more than 150 related viruses. Each HPV virus in this large group is given a number which is called its HPV type. HPV is named for the warts (papillomas) some HPV types can cause. Some other HPV types can lead to cancer, especially cervical cancer. There are more than 40 HPV types that can infect the genital areas of males and females. But there are vaccines that can prevent infection with the most common types of HPV.

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Syphilis is an STD that can cause long-term complications if not treated correctly. Symptoms in adults are divided into stages. These stages are primary, secondary, latent, and late syphilis.You can get syphilis by direct contact with a syphilis sore during vaginal, anal, or oral sex. Sores can be found on the penis, vagina, anus, in the rectum, or on the lips and in the mouth. Syphilis can also be spread from an infected mother to her unborn baby.

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Trichomoniasis (or “trich”) is a very common sexually transmitted disease (STD) that is caused by infection with a protozoan parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis. Although symptoms of the disease vary, most women and men who have the parasite cannot tell they are infected.Trichomoniasis is considered the most common curable STD. In the United States, an estimated 3.7 million people have the infection, but only about 30% develop any symptoms of trichomoniasis. Infection is more common in women than in men, and older women are more likely than younger women to have been infected.

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Congenital syphilis (CS) is a disease that occurs when a mother with syphilis passes the infection on to her baby during pregnancy. Learn more about syphilis.

CS can have major health impacts on your baby. How CS affects your baby’s health depends on how long you had syphilis and if — or when — you got treatment for the infection.

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The most reliable way to avoid infection is to not have sex (i.e., anal, vaginal or oral).

CDC

Vaccines are safe, effective, and recommended ways to prevent hepatitis B and HPV. HPV vaccines for males and females can protect against some of the most common types of HPV. It is best to get all three doses (shots) before becoming sexually active. However, HPV vaccines are recommended for all teen girls and women through age 26 and all teen boys and men through age 21, who did not get all three doses of the vaccine when they were younger. You should also get vaccinated for hepatitis B if you were not vaccinated when you were younger.

CDC

Reducing your number of sex partners can decrease your risk for STDs. It is still important that you and your partner get tested, and that you share your test results with one another.

CDC

Mutual monogamy means that you agree to be sexually active with only one person, who has agreed to be sexually active only with you. Being in a long-term mutually monogamous relationship with an uninfected partner is one of the most reliable ways to avoid STDs. But you must both be certain you are not infected with STDs. It is important to have an open and honest conversation with your partner.

CDC

Correct and consistent use of the male latex condom is highly effective in reducing STD transmission. Use a condom every time you have anal, vaginal, or oral sex.

If you have latex allergies, synthetic non-latex condoms can be used. But it is important to note that these condoms have higher breakage rates than latex condoms. Natural membrane condoms are not recommended for STD prevention.

CDC

Talk with your sex partner(s) about STDs and staying safe before having sex. It might be uncomfortable to start the conversation, but protecting your health is your responsibility.

CDC

Many STDs don’t have symptoms, but they can still cause health problems.The only way to know for sure if you have an STD is to get tested.

Kern County Public Health Clinic
Bakersfield: 1800 Mt. Vernon Ave.

  • Open Monday through Friday
  • Appointments are available 8am-11:15am and 12:45 pm – 4:15pm
  • Confidentiality is strictly observed for all patients 12 and older.
  • Walk-in’s are accepted but to reduce wait time, please call to make an appointment at 321-3000.
  • We accept Medi-Cal.
  • Don’t have insurance? You may qualify for Family Pact. Call 321-3000 or email us at askSTDclinic@co.kern.ca.us for eligibility questions.

Limited Appointments are available at the following locations (Call 661-321-3000 for more information):

It is important to communicate with your children. Check out the following resources:

LOCATION

Kern County Public Health Clinic

1800 Mt. Vernon Avenue
Bakersfield, CA 93306

To make an appointment for STD Testing

Call (661)321-3000

askSTDclinic@co.kern.ca.us 

Kern County Public Health Services offers free, on-site, rapid testing using the Ora Quick HIV Test. The test takes 20 minutes and is done using an oral swab. No appointment is necessary, we take walk-ins  between the hours of 8:00am-5:00pm, Monday-Friday. For more information call (661) 321-3000.
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Most STD’s are only transmitted during sexual contact, either through body fluid exchange or by skin-to-skin contact. It is possible to contract pubic lice, or crabs, from an infested toilet seat, but lice can only survive away from the body for less than 24 hours and it is extremely unlikely.

An infection transmitted through sexual contact, caused by bacteria, viruses, or parasites.

The most common STD among both men and women is HPV, the Human papillomavirus. Low-risk types of HPV cause genital warts, the most recognizable sign of genital HPV infection. Other high-risk types of HPV cause cervical cancer and other genital cancers. Although not curable, the highest-risk types of HPV that cause cancers and genital warts can be vaccinated against. The HPV vaccine is recommended for all girls and women up to age 26 and recommended for all boys and men up to age 21. For questions about the HPV vaccine, call us at 321-3000.Chlamydia is the most common STD caused by bacteria and is the most common reportable STD. Trichomoniasis, caused by a protozoan parasite, is the most common curable STD in young, sexually active women and it also affects men, although symptoms are more common in women.

No. Sexually transmitted diseases caused by viruses, such as HIV, HPV, and genital herpes are not curable. On the other hand, STD’s caused by bacteria or parasites can be cured with antibiotics.

Most young adults seen at our clinic will qualify for the Family Pact Program which will cover the costs for STD clinic services and any necessary prescriptions. For questions about eligibility, call 321-3000.

In California, there is no minimum age to buy condoms. Teens of any age can buy condoms from a drugstore, pharmacy, grocery store, or even online. Free condoms are also available at our clinic.

 

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If you feel the condom break during sex, stop immediately. Then withdraw, remove broken condom, and put on a new condom. It’s a good idea for both partners to be tested for STD’s after a condom breaks during sex.

Although bacterial STD’s such as chlamydia and gonorrhea can be cured by antibiotics, they can lead to more serious consequences. If untreated, bacterial STD’s can lead to Pelvic Inflammatory Disease in women and can cause infertility in both men and women.

Having sex for the first time is a big deal and a decision that you should make for yourself without feeling pressure from peers. Whether you choose to wait or have sex, you should know about the risks of STD’s and unintended pregnancy and feel comfortable talking to your partner honestly about how you are feeling.

HIV, human immunodeficiency virus, is the virus that can lead to AIDS, acquired immune deficiency syndrome. AIDS is the late stage of HIV infection, when a person’s immune system is severely damaged and has difficulty fighting diseases and certain cancers which can cause death. Currently there is no cure for HIV/AIDS, but today people can live much longer with HIV before they develop AIDS thanks to special medications. However, these medications need to be carefully monitored, are costly, and can have side effects.

If you are concerned you might have been exposed or have Sexually Transmitted Infection, clinic services for screening of Sexually Transmitted Infections are available at the following locations:

Kern County Public Health Clinic
Bakersfield: 1800 Mt. Vernon Ave.

  • Open Monday through Friday
  • Appointments are available 8am-11:15am and 12:45 pm – 4:15pm
  • Confidentiality is strictly observed for all patients 12 and older.
  • Walk-in’s are accepted but to reduce wait time, please call to make an appointment at 321-3000.
  • We accept Medi-Cal.
  • Don’t have insurance? You may qualify for Family Pact. Call 321-3000 or email us at askSTDclinic@co.kern.ca.us for eligibility questions.

Limited Appointments are available at the following locations (Call 661-321-3000 for more information):