Risky Business: Why Young Black Women Are Having Unsafe Sex

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When it comes to sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), Black women still rank at the top with the highest rates of infection. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Black women between the ages of 15 to 24 have the highest rates of chlamydia and syphilis. With all the information on safe sex and efforts to reduce HIV infection in Black women, why do young Black women still have high rates of STDs? While factors such as poverty and a lack of health education can affect Black women’s engagement in risky sexual behavior, a recent study on sexual health and Black women identified three areas that impact whether Black women at different ages engage in risky sexual behavior — affecting their risk to contract STDs.  Those factors are depression, parental relationships, and self-image.

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