Anyone who has had or is having sexual intercourse or oral sex, or who has participated or is participating in sex play, is at risk for acquiring an STD/STI. Fortunately, it is possible for a person to decrease his or her risk by having protected sex and knowing his or her STD/STI status and that of his or her partner. Still, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates nearly 20 million new cases of these reportable STDs/STIs (gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis) occur each year in the United States—almost half of them among young people 15 to 24 years of age.1
While not the most common STD/STI, HIV/AIDS is one of the most devastating and most well known. Recent data from the CDC indicate that 1.1 million Americans have HIV2:
- One in five is unaware that they have the virus.
- Approximately 50,000 Americans become infected with HIV each year.
- 15,529 people with AIDS died in 2010.
More information about the number of people who test positive for HIV/AIDS in the United States and the differences in these numbers for individuals from different cultures and backgrounds is available at the CDC website.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2012). Sexually transmitted disease surveillance 2011. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Retrieved March 19, 2013, from http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats11/Surv2011.pdf (PDF - 4.91 MB) [top]
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention. Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention. (2012, July). HIV in the United States: At a glance. Retrieved March 19, 2013, from http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/resources/factsheets/PDF/HIV_at_a_glance.pdf (PDF - 512 KB) [top]