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Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are infectious diseases transmitted through sexual contact. They are among the most common infectious diseases - with the United States having the highest rates of STDs in the industrialized world.
The best way to prevent contracting an STD is to abstain from any type of sexual intercourse. However, if you decide to become sexually active, or are currently sexually active, there are several precautionary measures to follow, recommended by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, to help reduce your risk of developing a sexually transmitted disease. These include the following:
Numerous STDs have been identified and affect more than 19 million men and women in this country each year. According to the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Centers for Disease Control, common types of STDs include: