Beaufort County recognizes national condom dayPublished 12:25am Tuesday, February 12, 2013
On Feb. 14, Beaufort County Health Department will be supporting national condom day. National condom day is dedicated to the awareness and use of condoms to prevent sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unwanted pregnancy.
Condoms can protect against a wide range of STIs, from gonorrhea, chlamydia and trichomoniasis to HIV/AIDS, herpes and syphilis, if the condom is used consistently and correctly. Condoms are also 98 percent effective against preventing pregnancy.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, every year in the United States 19 million new cases of STIs occur. With perfect use of a condom the risk of HIV is reduced by 80 percent.
Each year STIs cost the U.S. healthcare system $17 billion, with HIV care costing $7 billion on its own. Besides abstinence, which is the only way sure way to stay safe, the most effective way to cut down this number of STIs in the US is to use a condom correctly during each sexual encounter.
While it is important to remember that STIs affect the world, they are also quite prevalent in our state. North Carolina currently ranks 14th in the U.S. for chlamydia cases with numbers continuing to rise. While syphilis and gonorrhea are on the decline, HIV/AIDS cases are on the rise.
National condom day is a day to recognize and learn the importance of using a condom. Condoms can reduce the risk of STIs and unwanted pregnancy. Condoms may not provide 100 percent protection for any disease or pregnancy but they do reduce the risk, which is better than unprotected sex.
To learn more about condoms and ways to prevent STIs and unwanted pregnancy, contact Kelli Russell, Human Services Planner III with the Beaufort County Health Department, at 940-6528.