Millions of people are infected with STDs. They come from all walks of life, all ages, and all corners of the globe. Nobody is immune from these diseases but it is possible to avoid them by learning as much as possible about transmission. There are so many myths that continue to pass as common knowledge. These are unhelpful as they either spread unnecessary fear or inadequately protect people from harm. Below are some facts from the American Sexual Health Association:

1. HIV does not spread through mosquito bites.

By now, most people know that HIV is a blood-borne infection. We have been warned that sharing needles as in drug injections and laboratory examinations can result in transmission. Because of this, there is a fear that perhaps mosquitoes and other insects that draw blood from us may spread the virus around an area. The good news is that this has proven to be untrue in several studies that were conducted by the Center for Disease Control. They have gone to communities where the number of infections in the population were high but have not found a direct correlation to insect bites.

2. HIV can be acquired while getting tattoos.

One confirmed way of transmission is through the unhygienic use of piercing tools. For example, a person who walks into a tattoo and piercing parlor should check their practices. Are they mindful of cleanliness and hygiene? Do they use new needles for every customer or use the same thing over and over again? Their equipment penetrates the skin and gets in contact with blood. If someone has a blood-borne disease, then this could be passed on to the next unfortunate customer.

3. STDs can spread without oral sex.

Some of the trepidation when it comes to oral sex stems from the fears that it will result in the transmission of STDs. It is true that some diseases can spread this way including oral herpes. If someone has this condition and they perform oral sex on their partner, then there is a high chance that their partner’s genital area will be infected. However, this is not the only way that diseases are passed on from one individual to the next. Other bodily fluids can contain virus and bacteria.

4. Herpes does not spread through toilet seats.

Herpes is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases. Its main way of spreading is through direct skin contact. You will have to bump into an infected person for you to get this STD. There are fears that sharing a toilet is enough to get it as their skin might leave unwanted residues but this has not been proven. For more information about STDs, go to Health Host and read their advice.