The most effective way to avoid transmitting syphilis or any STD is to practice abstinence or be in a monogamous relationship where both partners are known to be free of any STDs or STIs (sexually transmitted infections).
Other recommendations include avoiding excessive use of alcohol or drugs as our inhibitions are clouded when under the influence of these substances, which may lead to promiscuity or risky sexual behaviours.
It is of the utmost importance that sexual partners are open with each other and disclose any STDs that they have been exposed to so that preventative measures can be agreed upon.
The use of condoms can greatly reduce the risk of contracting syphilis. In many cases the sores (chancres) that appear once one is infected are in the genital area. Latex condoms will protect one from contracting the infection should this be the case. However, if the sores are on other areas of the body that are not covered, a condom will not offer you protection or prevent you from spreading the infection to others.
The spreading of STDs cannot be prevented by cleansing the genital area by douching or urinating after sex. Should you experience any abnormal discharge, soreness, or rashes in the genital region you should abstain from having sexual intercourse and visit your doctor or a nearby STD clinic straight away.
Once you have been treated for syphilis it is necessary to refrain from having sexual relations until you are certain that the symptoms of syphilis have completely subsided. Being considerate of your sexual partners, you should notify them immediately if you have syphilis so that they can be tested and receive adequate treatment if need be. This will also help to stop the spreading of the condition to others.
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