What is contact tracing and how does it work in STI

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Contact tracing has been associated with Covid-19, but it is also helpful in tracing and treating STIs. Here’s all you need to know about it!

You may have heard the term ‘contact tracing’ several times by now. Yes yes, it has a connection with Covid-19. We know the government has been using this strategy to curb the spread of the virus. But did you know this applies in the case of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) too? Oh, no kidding here! The biggest difference here is that it is difficult to trace and do the right thing since there is so much stigma attached to it.

This is exactly what Dr Niveditha Manokaran (or dr_nive_untaboos on Insta) has spoken about in her recent post. Here’s what she writes, “It is important to understand that your STI treatment is incomplete without contact tracing and is one of the biggest prevention strategies. It prevents the spread of STIs.”

Check out the post for yourself:

What does contact tracing include?

It includes contacting your sexual partners in the last three months to a year, having them tested, and finally opting for treatment.

Informing your partner is important because STIs can spread easily and can be
asymptomatic. That’s not all – being undiagnosed can lead to several complications, which may cause further damage in the long run. Moreover, when your partner is aware, he/she also gets the opportunity to get tested and treated, which is important.

“You must abstain from having sex with your partner until the treatment is complete, and they have got rid of it, because you can reinfect each other,” Dr Manokaran adds.

contact tracing
Don’t indulge in sexual activities until you complete treatment of STI! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

How can you practice contact tracing?

Dr Manokaran says that communication is key in a relationship, so it’s important to let your partner know either in person, or over a text or voice message, in case you don’t feel comfortable.

“Sometimes, your doctors and counselors can help you do it anonymously, so please talk to them about it. Your STI testing is incomplete without contact tracing,” she concludes.

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