Sexually transmitted diseases affect both men and women today. Most of them show symptoms while some doesn’t. That’s why its advisable to go for regular medical checkup even though you are not seeing signs on your body. STD symptoms in men can vary drastically from person to person, based on what infection is present, and what stage the infection is in. STD symptoms in males can range from none to mild to severe. Many men will suspect an STD infection if there is an unusual symptom in the genital region, such as itching, a rash, discharge, or penile/testicular pain. However, STDs can produce vague symptoms that can also be caused by other, non-STD disease processes making it difficult to pinpoint the cause of the problem. In addition, the majority of STD infections produce no symptoms at all, complicating their detection.
Symptoms of STD in Men
- No signs at all
- Itching at the tip of the penis
- Rash on the penis, testicles, or groin
- Discharge (a milky white, yellow, thick or thin substance coming from the tip of the penis)
- Pain with urination
- Pain with ejaculation
- Painful blisters on the genitals (penile spots/penile bumps)
Other symptoms of STD in Men
- Painless ulcer on the penis or testicles
- Testicular pain and swelling
- Epididymitis (painful swelling of the tube that carries urine and ejaculate)
- Painful swelling of a joint (like a knee or elbow)
- Sore throat (if engaging in oral sex)
- Rectal pain, discharge, or bleeding (if engaging in receptive anal sex)
You may notice these symptoms within days of exposure to the infection. Some men mistakenly believe that because they are not experiencing any symptoms, they don’t have a STD infection. In many cases of male STD infection, no symptoms will develop at all. Even men who have an STD but do not have symptoms can pass the infection to a sexual partner. This is why it’s important for men to be comprehensively screened for STDs if they are sexually active, especially if they have ever engaged in unprotected sex.
STD in Women
STD’s does not only affect men, women too also contact it. Most STDs in women don’t produce symptoms or, if they do, result in vague or generic flu-like symptoms that could be the result of many different conditions. It can be hard to determine the cause of symptoms due to an STD without getting tested. Women are more likely than men to suffer symptoms such as bumps, itching, or burning urination due to a sexually transmitted disease/infection, especially in the genital region. Without those first noticeable signs of an STD, infections often go unnoticed and untreated, which can cause long-lasting or even irreversible effects if left untreated.
Below is a list of common symptoms women notice when they have STD:
- No symptoms
- Discharge (thick or thin, milky white, yellow, or green leakage from the vagina)
- Vaginal itching
- Vaginal blisters or blisters in the genital area (the region covered by underwear)
- Vaginal rash or rash in the genital area
- Burning urination
- Painful urination
- Pain during intercourseWhen symptoms do occur, they typically appear within days or weeks of exposure to an STD. Often, symptoms never appear or go unnoticed. Even if an infection never results in obvious symptoms, the STD can still be transmitted and progress into a more serious condition that may result in irreversible side effects. Regular comprehensive STD testing is the only way to guarantee a clean bill of sexual health. It is especially important to get tested for STDs after risky or unprotected sexual contact.
Other symptoms may include:
- Bleeding or spotting between menstrual cycles
- Painless ulcers on the vagina
- Pelvic pain
- Lower back pain
- Sore throat (after oral sex)
- Swelling of the joints (knee, elbow, etc.)
- Rectal pain, bleeding, or discharge (after receiving anal sex)
Frequently asked questions and answers
- What are the first signs of an STD?
Signs and symptoms of gonorrhea may include:
- Thick, cloudy or bloody discharge from the penis or vagina.
- Pain or burning sensation when urinating.
- Heavy menstrual bleeding or bleeding between periods.
- Painful, swollen testicles.
- Painful bowel movements.
- Anal itching.
- What are the symptoms of STI in a woman?
Fever and flu-like symptoms.
Genital itching, burning, or discomfort.
Vaginal discharge in women.
Swollen lymph nodes.
A feeling of pressure in the abdomen
How long does it take to know if you have an STD?
When symptoms do appear they may show up as early as two days after exposure, or take as long as one month. Syphilis: The chancre characteristic of the first stage of syphilis appears, on average, twenty-one days after infection, but may appear anytime between 10 to 90 days after exposure to the bacterium.