The healthcare system in Africa faces a significant problem with sexually transmitted infections. At the moment, many studies focus on the situation in Sub Saharan African regions. Studies also suggest the implementation of more effective strategies to assist in reducing the prevalence of STIs in these low-income regions.
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The Current State Of STIs In Africa
There are several sexually transmitted infections currently considered bothersome subjects by the African healthcare systems. HIV and Aids, along with Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and Syphilis are all currently at high rates.
One study explains that the complications of these sexually transmitted diseases are adversely affecting the healthcare system, as well as the population. Some complications noted by the study include pelvic inflammatory disease, respiratory tract morbidity, and conjunctivitis. Several concerns regarding pregnancy and STIs are also noted in the study. This includes ectopic pregnancy and stillbirth. The population is also at risk of infertility due to complications presented by many of these sexually transmitted diseases.
In up to 49% of cases where ulcers are reported, Chancroid is linked to the occurrence of such symptoms. Chlamydia is also linked to lymphogranuloma venereum in the country, affecting up to 6.1% o the population.
Implementing Prevention Strategies
There are highly effective prevention strategies that can be used to effectively reduce the transmission of sexually transmitted infections in Africa. Education plays a key part in allowing success in preventing a further increase in transmission rates of common sexually transmitted infections among the African population.
Individuals need to be educated from an early age. This would ensure children are equipped with skills to reduce their risk of sexual behavior that would increase their likeliness to become infected with STIs.
A focus should be placed on safe sex. This would include the use of condoms during sexual intercourse. Condoms can help to reduce the risk of being infected with an STI. Safe sex does not only contribute to a reduced risk of sexually transmitted diseases but also helps reduce the rate of early pregnancies in teenagers.
Data related to symptoms of Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, HIV, and other STIs should also be provided to the population. This would ensure individuals are able to recognize the symptoms and get tested. When diagnosed early, the person has a better chance of treatment providing effective results. An early diagnosis also ensures the individual understand that they should not participate in risky sexual behaviour – as this would cause them to transmit the disease to their sexual partners.
Prevention strategies should include making STD testing options more available to the population, ensuring individuals can be tested for common STIs frequently.
There is a high prevalence of certain STIs in Africa. Several low-income areas of Africa are facing a difficult time implementing appropriate strategies to reduce the current rate of STIs in the region. There are several strategies that may provide a reduced incidence of infections and diseases that are transmitted through sexual intercourse.