Is HPV Contagious And How Can I Prevent Contracting The Disease?
Is It Contagious?
just found out that your friend has HPV, the human papillomavirus, and with it,
an associated condition called vaginal warts. You sympathize. It certainly
sounds nasty. However, you can't help but be concerned for your own health. Is
it is, but you're not going to get it without having had sex with an infected
partner. The HPV that causes genital warts is an STD, a sexually transmitted
disease. That means that just because your best friend has HPV you shouldn't give her the support she needs at this difficult time. Now that you
know what a weird, embarrassing, and even dangerous condition HPV can be, you
wonder what you should know about this disease to protect yourself from
contracting it too.
Not Even A Condom Can Prevent HPV Infection With Total Reliability
it turns out, the simplest way of preventing not just HPV, but other STDs as well, is to
stay in a monogamous relationship. If that's not possible, try to limit the
number of sexual partners with whom you have sex. The sad fact is that not even
a condom can prevent HPV infection with total reliability.
are some vaccines available, but this is both good and bad news. The good news
is that they exist and the bad news is that there are several different
strains of HPV, and there is only a vaccine for some of these varieties. Also, the vaccine
only works if you haven't been exposed to the virus. It's ideal for women to
have the vaccine before they become sexually active.
fact, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) now recommends that girls between
the ages of 11 and 12 receive the vaccine known as Gardasil as part of their
regular immunization regimen. American girls are having sex earlier than ever,
and most pediatricians are urging their female patients to have this vaccine since it is the most powerful tool for protecting against cervical cancer, a potential condition of HPV infected women. Even if someone has HPV, the vaccine can protect against
contracting other strains of the virus, though it is not yet known if the
vaccine is effective in men.
are very few side effects to the vaccine. In fact, the only possible side
effect worth mentioning is pain at the site of the injection. If you think that you
are at risk of contracting this disease, you should speak to your doctor about
having an injection of Gardasil.