- Multiple sex partners
- Lack of knowledge of negotiation skills
- Alcohol and drug use
- Sense of invulnerability
- Willingness to take risks
Photo: B. Goldberg
Adolescents are another group that needs STD services. About
seven of every 10 STD infections occur among individuals aged
15 to 24.
Sexually active, unmarried young adults are at high risk for
STDs, primarily for behavioral reasons. Risky sexual behaviors
of young adults include changing sexual partners often or having
a partner with multiple partners. Also, many youth lack knowledge
of STDs. Even those who are knowledgeable may find it difficult
to use condoms consistently and correctly. Young adults also
may lack communication and negotiation skills, making condom
use difficult. In addition, youth who use alcohol or drugs may
behave in ways that increase their risk for STDs.
Psychological factors that put many adolescents at increased
risk for STDs include a general sense of invulnerability and
the desire to try new experiences and willingness to take risks.