Thursday, February 7, 2008

Internet Dating: Health Risks, STDs and the need for Companionship

If you are single, on line dating and cyber dating is something you may have given thought to or even tried out. The internet is the fastest and easiest way to connect to and reach a large population of fellow singles.

I've tried it out here and there-- I'm more of a fan of meeting someone in person when I'm out and about doing things that I love. But, know a lot of folks that have had success. But, I've also known quite a few people who had had some terrible experiences.

It is so natural for humans to desire human interaction and human contact. We are now in the era where people can work from home and are ironically, more cut off from typical human interaction despite being so connected globally via the internet. Typical ways of meeting people via church, school and work are no longer the main ways to meet a possible mate.

We are also in an era where men and women are getting married later in life. Careers and the enjoyment of being single is taking precadence over finding a mate. As such, there is more sexual activity and experience

It's not surprising once you see the numbers. One in four women is infected with genital herpes, and nearly one in five men according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And a study in this week's Journal of the American Medical Association finds that one in four women has human papillomavirus, which can cause genital warts and cervical cancer.(Interactive: Test your STD knowledge)

According to new estimates by the CDC, approximately 15 percent of the U.S. population -- about 20 million people -- is infected with HPV. This is an alarming number and all men and women engaging in casual or monogamous sexual relationships should take appropriate precautions.


Although people between the ages of 15 and 24 represent only 25 percent of the sexually active population, recent studies suggest they acquire nearly half of all new sexually transmitted diseases...If you are a 20 something or 30 something on the singles dating seen it is important to know your history and the sexual history of a potential parnter.

Such situations has created a new industry: Internet dating sites just for people with STDs. From MPWH.com to stdmatch.net, Web sites abound for the infected who want to date the infected.

5 SAFETY & HEALTH TIPS WHEN ENGAGING IN INTERNET DATING

1) Meet in a public place.
When first meeting it's best to do so in a public place surrounded by other individuals. This way you don't have to worry about an uneasy or potentially dangerous situation.

2) Never get talked into anything you do not want to do or feel you're obligated to do anything.
If you feel like you're being coaxed or forced into an uncomfortable meeting or situation, it's best to avoid it. Just say no. Always listen to your gut!

3) Do not get in his/her car.
Getting into a car with a perfect stranger is not advised. Keep to your plan and stay in a public place for a first meeting. Don't let your emotions or the fantasy of it let you get caught up in a dangerous situation.

4) Let someone know where and when you are meeting and anything you do know about him.
This way if there is a problem, people know where you are, whom you're with, and when you're expected home. It will also be easier to create an exit strategy, if need be.

5.) If you are going to engage in a sexual relationship; ask the right questions and be ready to share the most recent STD testing results.
Given the statistics, you have be be safe, conscious and aware of your health. It is easy to get STD tests and blood work done at your annual exam and should be shared with a potential partner. Similarly, they should do the same and if they do not- move on...they are more than likely hiding something and are not worth your time.



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Have a question about dealing with an STD or treating an STD naturally?

Want to recommend a great natural remedy for HPV or Herpes?

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Melissa Gallagher at 727-954-8968.

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