STIs and Mpox

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

Sexually transmitted infections, more commonly known as STIs, include a range of diseases caused by different bacteria and viruses. Some of the more common STIs (like chlamydia and gonorrhea) can be passed from one person to another through sexual contact (vaginal, anal, or oral) and certain STIs (herpes and Human Papilloma Virus -HPV) can be spread by skin to skin contact, including during sexual contact. Some STIs can be transmitted through bodily fluids (blood, semen, pre-seminal fluid, rectal fluids, vaginal fluids, and breast milk), such as HIV, and Hepatitis B and C. Body fluid transmission can occur during sexual contact, and through sharing needles or syringes.

Many persons infected with STIs do not show any signs or symptoms of illness, which is why it is important to use protection and visit your doctor regularly. These diseases can have serious long-term effects if not treated (or controlled) immediately.

Preventing STIs:

  • Abstinence: The most reliable way to avoid infection is to not have sex (i.e., anal, vaginal or oral).
  • Vaccination: Vaccines are safe, effective, and recommended ways to prevent hepatitis B and HPV. HPV vaccination is recommended for preteens ages 11 or 12 (or can start at age 9) and everyone through age 26, if not vaccinated already. Vaccination is not recommended for everyone older than age 26 years. However, some adults age 27 through 45 years who are not already vaccinated may decide to get the HPV vaccine after speaking with their doctor about their risk for new HPV infections and the possible benefits of vaccination. HPV vaccination in this age range provides less benefit as more people have already been exposed to HPV. You should also get vaccinated for Hepatitis B if you were not vaccinated when you were younger. Mpox vaccination is also available for those who are at increased risk of Mpox (see below for more information about Mpox).
  • Reduce Number of Sex Partners: Reducing your number of sex partners can decrease your risk for STIs. It is still important that you and your partner get tested, and that you share your test results with one another.
  • Mutual Monogamy: Mutual monogamy means that you agree to be sexually active with only one person, who has agreed to be sexually active only with you. Being in a long-term mutually monogamous relationship with an uninfected partner is one of the most reliable ways to avoid STIs. But you must both be certain you are not infected with STIs. It is important to have an open and honest conversation with your partner.
  • Use Condoms: Correct and consistent use of condoms is highly effective in reducing STI transmission. Use a condom every time you have anal, vaginal, or oral sex.

Have questions about STIs?

Please click here for our anonymous question form and one of our public health nurses will assist you with your questions. 


Mpox is a virus that is spread person-to-person (including through sexual activity). Mpox is an emerging virus in the United States. Please see our fact sheet below to learn how to protect yourself. 

Updated 08/2023

Elkhorn Logan Valley Public Health Department


PO Box 779
2104 21st Circle
Wisner, NE 68791


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