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Find Out If You Live In One Of The Worst US States For STDs


Madison Dapcevich


Madison Dapcevich

Freelance Writer and Fact-Checker

Madison is a freelance science reporter and full-time fact-checker based in the wild Rocky Mountains of western Montana.

Freelance Writer and Fact-Checker


Don't be a fool: wrap your banana. Valzan/Shutterstock

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are on the rise across the United States. A report compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found three of the most common diseases disproportionately affect certain states.

The Sexually Transmitted Diseases Surveillance Report found chlamydia rates rose 4.7 percent, gonorrhea 18.5 percent, and syphilis 17.6 percent between 2015 and 2016. During that time frame, 1.59 million cases of chlamydia were reported, nearly half a million cases of gonorrhea, and more than 27,000 cases of syphilis.


Anyone who is sexually active is at risk of contracting STDs, but certain groups are more likely to be exposed, including young people between the ages of 15 and 24, gay and bisexual men, as well as pregnant women. Of all men infected with syphilis in 2016, 80.6 percent were men who have sex with men (MSM), increasing 151 percent from between 2010 and 2016. Young women make up more than half of new chlamydia infections, while gonorrhea increased 120 percent among people of color between 2012 and 2016.

The report only measures chlamydia, syphilis, and gonorrhea. All three are treatable but can cause long-term health issues.

Rates of chlamydia reported by state. CDC


Chlamydia is a common STD that can be easily cured, but if left untreated can cause serious and permanent damage to a woman’s reproductive system, making it difficult or impossible to get pregnant. It can be transmitted by having vaginal, oral, or anal sex with a partner who is infected, and sometimes doesn’t have symptoms. That being said, men and women with chlamydia can experience abnormal discharge, a burning sensation when peeing, and can experience pain or bleeding in the rectum if they get an infection here.


The states with the highest rates for Chlamydia per capita include:

  1. 1. Alaska
  1. 2. Louisiana
  2. 3. Mississippi 
  3. 4. New Mexico 
  4. 5. Georgia
  5. 6. North Carolina
  6. 7. South Carolina
  7. 8. Delaware
  8. 9. Arkansas
  9. 10. Illinois 

  10. Gonorrhea rates reported by state. CDC


Women rarely experience symptoms when infected with gonorrhea. On the other hand, men often experience a burning sensation when urinating, discolored discharge from the penis, and sometimes painful or swollen testicles. It can be cured, but it is becoming harder to treat as some strains have developed drug resistance to common antibiotics. If symptoms continue after treatment begins, health experts recommend seeking help from your healthcare provider.

States with the highest rates of gonorrhea include:

  1. 1. Mississippi
  2. 2. Louisiana
  3. 3. Georgia
  4. 4. Alaska
  5. 5. North Carolina
  6. 6. Oklahoma
  7. 7. Arkansas
  8. 8. Missouri
  9. 9. South Carolina
  10. 10. Delaware
Rates of syphilis cases reported by state. CDC


Syphilis presents itself in different stages (primary, secondary, latent, and tertiary) that are each exhibit their own signs and symptoms. Without treatment, at any stage syphilis can spread into the brain and nervous system. While it can be cured, treatment may not undo the damage caused after becoming infected.

The CDC ranked syphilis cases in both primary and secondary stage by reported cases from 2012-2016:

  1. 1. Alabama
  2. 2. Alaska
  3. 3. Arizona
  4. 4. Arkansas
  5. 5. California
  6. 6. Colorado
  7. 7. Connecticut
  8. 8. Delaware
  9. 9. District of Columbia
  10. 10. Florida



[H/T: Newsweek]  


healthHealth and Medicine
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  • chlamydia,

  • syphilis,

  • Gonorrhea,

  • STDs,

  • sexually transmitted diseases,

  • states with the worst stds