How do STIs affect pregnant women and their babies?
Dear Wondering Wanda,
STIs can cause many of the same health problems in pregnant women as well as in women who are not pregnant. But having an STI can also threaten the pregnancy and unborn baby’s health. Having an STI during pregnancy can cause early labor and infection in the uterus after birth. Some STIs can be passed from a pregnant woman to the baby before and during the birth. Some STIs, like syphilis, cross the placenta and infect the baby while it is in the uterus. Other STIs, like gonorrhea, can be passed from the mother during delivery as the baby passes through the birth canal. HIV can cross the placenta during pregnancy and infect the baby during the birth process.
Why do men get erections in the morning?
Dear Morning Wood,
When guys hold their urine in for a long time, it can cause an erection. That’s why morning erections are so common; it doesn’t necessarily mean a guy is turned on! But guys also have a higher testosterone level in the morning, which can make him get an erection while he’s sleeping.
Do frequent occurrences of yeast infections or epididymitis increase your chances of contracting an STI?
Dear Discomforted Distress,
In most cases, recurrent yeast infections have nothing to do with STIs. If your yeast infections are recurrent, perhaps the medication you’re using is not effective for your particular infection. With recurrent yeast infections, it is a good idea to have a culture done to figure out what strain of yeast you have. Chronic yeast infections are usually indicative of a more serious health problem and usually involve lowered immune response or even diabetes.
Epididymitis is an inflammation of part of the male genitals. On occasion, it is because of an infection such as chlamydia or gonorrhea, but it can also be caused by other problems that are not infections at all. Recurrent epididymitis should be checked out by your doctor. The fact of the matter is that frequent occurrences of these problems do not increase your chances of contracting an STI.