Who Should Be Tested for STDs and How Frequently?

Around the world, every day, about one million sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are acquired. And in America, more than 20 million new cases of STDs are reported each year, many of which don’t come with obvious symptoms. STD testing is the only way to know for sure if you’re among them.   

STDs may be common, but for many discussing them is uncomfortable or embarrassing. Don’t let those feelings from getting the education, diagnosis, and treatment you need. At Patel & Patel, MD, located in South Charleston, WV, Kiran Patel, MD, and Leela Patel, MD, are dedicated to your total health and wellness. They offer a full range of services to help teens and adults stay healthy and disease-free, including comprehensive STD testing and treatment. If you’re wondering if you should be tested for STDs and how frequently, we can help. Read on to learn more!

What are STDs?

Infections passed from person-to-person through vaginal, anal, or oral sexual intercourse are called sexually transmitted diseases or STDs. You might also hear people call STDs a venereal disease or STI (sexually transmitted infection).  

There are more than many types of STDs. Different bacteria or viruses cause different kinds of STDs, but some of the most common STDs include:

Who should be tested for STDs and when?

Who should be tested and how frequently depends on whether your sexually active, your age, and your medical and sexual health history. Certain lifestyle factors increase your risk of contracting an STD and, therefore, how often you should be screened.  

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommend the following STD testing schedule:

Chlamydia and gonorrhea

All sexually active women 24 years and younger and older women at a higher risk should be screened.


Adolescents and adults at an increased risk for syphilis should be screened. Risk factors for chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis include having new or multiple sex partners or a sex partner who has a history of STDs. Having sex without using a condom also increases your risk.


Everyone aged 13 to 65 who have had sexual contact should be tested at least once. Yearly screening is recommended if you’re at a higher risk. Patients with an increased risk include sexually active gay and bisexual men. Also, having unprotected sexual contact with more than one partner or an unknown partner.

Human papillomavirus (HPV)

HPV infections are prevalent, and they usually go away without causing health problems. For that reason, routine HPV tests aren’t recommended. They would produce positive results even when there is no cause for concern.

How are STDs treated?

Different STD diagnoses require other treatment protocols. Many STDs are treatable with oral medication. At Patel & Patel, M.D, we help you understand your risk factors and provide safe, effective treatment if screening reveals you have an STD. 

How can I learn more about confidential STD testing?

If it’s time for your STD screening or if you’re concerned about STDs, Patel & Patel, MD, is here to help. Call our office or request an appointment online,

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