North Dakota in general does an OK job of testing and preventing STDs, thanks largely in part to our relatively low and spread-out population.  But that doesn't mean we should take STD's lightly here in the peace garden state.

North Dakota’s reported STDs are generally below average, except for gonorrhea, which is above average.

In North Dakota, some of the underlying causes of increased STDs relate to a complex network of social factors.

Some of these factors may include economic disparities that prevent access to appropriate health care, substance use, homelessness, and the exchange of sex for money or other resources.

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Trends seen in North Dakota include:

STD Trends in North Dakota
State rankCasesRate per 100,000 population
Congenital syphilis23rd328.7

STD Screening Recommendations and Risk Factors

If you have sex, you are at risk for getting an STD. According to the CDC, risk factors for STDs include:

  • Unprotected sex (anal, vaginal, or oral)
  • Sex with multiple partners
  • Anonymous sex partners
  • Sex under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Injection of drugs or sharing needles

Should you get tested for STDs? And how often? Talk to your doctor to be sure, but you should generally follow these CDC recommendations:

Who Should Get Tested?

Anyone who is sexually active

Sexually active women under 25 or women 25+ with new or multiple sex partners or a partner with an STD

At least once for HIV and more often if you have new partners

Pregnant women During pregnancy, for syphilis, HIV, hepatitis B and C, chlamydia, and gonorrhea

Sexually active gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men

Annually for gonorrhea and chlamydia

Anyone who has unsafe sex or shares injection drug equipment
People who have had oral or anal sex

How Often Should You Get Tested For What?

Annually for syphilis, chlamydia, and gonorrhea (every three to six months if you have multiple or anonymous partners)
Annually for HIV
Annually for hepatitis C if living with HIV
Annually for HIV and Hepatitis B and C
Discuss throat and rectal testing with your health care provider

North Dakota Community STD Testing Centers

Community-based STD testing organizations generate awareness and foster social change while providing access to testing and treatment.

If you’re concerned about visiting your regular doctor or can’t afford the cost of private testing, a community testing center may be able to help. While community testing centers may charge a fee for STD testing, it’s common to find free or low-cost testing from these resources:

  • Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health
    Address: 500 East Front Avenue, Bismarck, ND 58504Number: (701) 355-1540
  • Custer Health
    Address: 403 Burlington Street Southeast, Mandan, ND 58554Number: (701) 667-3370 or (888) 667-3370
  • Fargo Cass Public Health
    Address: 1240 25th Street South, Fargo, ND 58103Number: (701) 241-1383
  • First District Health Unit
    Address: 801 11th Avenue Southwest, Minot, ND 58702Number: (701) 852-1376
  • North Dakota Department of Health
    Address: 2635 East Main Avenue, Bismarck, ND 58506Number: (701) 328-2372 or (800) 472-2180
  • Upper Missouri District Health Unit
    Address: 110 West Broadway, Suite 101, Williston, ND 58801Number: (701) 774-6400 or (877) 572-3763

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