Did you know that, worldwide, STDs are on the increase, in some places quite dramatically. The USA has seen, in the past six or seven years, the incidence of contracting Syphilis increasing across all age groups by a staggering 6o%, and senior citizens are as guilty as the younger end of the population, free love apparently being all the rage. one of the most prevalent STDs, Syphilis is bacterial in nature, caused due to treponema pallidum, spread from person to person through contact during sex.
Syphilis first appeared in Europe in 1496 and was known as the Great Pox or French Disease, causing terrible sickness, including severe ulceration of the part of the body first infected, often the genitals, soft tissue being eaten away to the bone, but within 50 years syphilis had changed from an acute, severe and debilitating disease to the milder infection that is the modern version.
The problem is that catching this pox could have serious implications, because the chance of contracting HIV through heterosexual sex with an HIV positive partner is 30 times greater if you have syphilis, and people often do not realize that they have been infected. It is often mistaken for other skin diseases due to varied symptoms..
In primary stages, lesions appear where sexual contact happened, but are generally painless and firm to the touch, causing some discomfort, but disappearing within three to six weeks, and the fact that they disappear lulls the sufferer into a false sense of security, because, some weeks later reddish pink rashes break out all over the body, but they do not itch, though accompanied by other symptoms, such as feeling unwell, blinding headaches, hair falling out and losing weight, as well as having constant feverishness.
Left untreated, which these days is done with a course of antibiotics, over time the symptoms mentioned will disappear and come again regularly, eventually leading to the Syphilis assaulting the central nervous system, causing awful seizures, loss of balance, intense pains aneurysm formation in heart tissues, growth of tumor type swellings around the body and dementia, before death finally claims the victim
Any intimate acts, from simple kissing to full-blown intercourse, oral or anal sex, and any sort of physical contact can mean that this disease passes from one sex partner to the other, and a pregnant mother-to-be can pass it on to the unborn child through her blood. Regular checks are essential, if you have any doubt at all, because the pox can take a long time to be evident, so consult your doctor often.
Many treatment options are available for syphilis, dependant on infection intensity, the earlier it is diagnosed, the easier it is to treat, in early stages, often treated with penicillin G, though tetracycline and doxycycline also get called into use, though not provided to pregnant women. Harder to treat in its final stages, penicillin needs to be injected intravenously, for at least ten days to help rid the sufferer of Syphilis, helping to in preventing the disease causing further damage.
Being a bacterial infection, the pox is treated with toxins in the form of antibiotics, and often the release of these within the body causes a reaction known as the Herxheimer, a session of suffering from chills, headaches and fevers that normally subside within a day, after the body has rid itself of the toxic waste from the treatments. It should be noted that STDs other than Syphilis, like Chlamidiya, are also increasing rapidly, 27% more people carrying this condition than was the case a decade ago.
When the huge wave of media hype hit in the 80s, after HIV became widely known about, the incidence of casual sex went down dramatically for several years, and STD rates also nose-dived, but over the twenty years since, the majority of society seems to have very much stopped paying too much attention to AIDS and HIV. Half of Africans might be infected, but we in the west have no need to worry? This is a frightening reality of the present day.
Sex, casual and frequent, seems once more to be the norm in western societies, America leading the way in the spreading of those wonderful sexually transmitted diseases, and that is precisely where the danger lies. THIRTY times more prone to catching HIV if you have Syphilis, and you could have it for months before you realize it. The west could easily become another victim of runaway pandemic numbers of AIDS victims, because the attitude to sex is so very free and easy.
Syphilis was originally a real killer of a disease, and just because it adapted to suit the humans on whom it preyed, becoming more treatable, does not make it any less dangerous today. The secretive, silent assassin by proxy, the pox is waiting to say a warm hello to anyone who is just too casual about sex, and HIV could well be waiting in the wings. You have been warned.