Boulder Teen Clinic

I just recently had oral sex with my boyfriend and now the right side of my vagina itches…

…The other day I experienced white discharge. Now that this has happened I’m afraid I might have something. I’m so worried and this happened only 3 days ago (the oral sex). Can issues show up that quickly?

Although these can be symptoms of an STI (or sexually transmitted infection), these can also be symptoms of something totally different, like a skin irritation. Before we jump to a conclusion about either one, let’s talk about oral sex and it’s relationship to STIs.

Many people believe that because oral sex isn’t vaginal or anal penetration, there is little to no risk. But the fact is, you can get all STIs, (except for pubic lice) when engaging in oral sex with someone who has the infection. There are four ways in which someone can contract an STI. They are…

  • Blood
  • Skin to skin contact
  • Sexual fluids (vaginal fluids and semen)
  • Mother to child

When someone is engaging in oral sex, they can come into contact with someone’s blood, sexual fluids, and/or skin. But the good news is that there are ways to prevent STI transmission from happening! Using a condom for oral sex on a penis will help drastically reduce your risk of transmitting an STI.  If oral sex is being performed on the vagina or anus, a dental dam can be used to help reduce your risk also! You can pick up free condoms and dental dams at Teen Clinic!

It may be a great idea that you get tested. Most STIs are asymptomatic, meaning that there are no symptoms but that the STI is still causing harm to the body. Because of this, getting tested on a regular basis is a great way to ensure that you’re healthy.

If someone does have symptoms, it’s hard to say when or how they would show up- this depends on that specific person. Depending on what type of STI test someone is getting, the test would usually show accurate results 2 weeks after a potential exposure.

Teen Clinic provides free or low-cost and confidential STI testing, most of which are very simple and painless tests! Remember that flavored condoms and dental dams are effective methods for reducing the transmission of STIs during oral sex! Until you are tested and potentially treated, abstain for sexual activity or use condoms and dental dams.

Give us a call to get more information and/or to make an appointment! 303-442-5160.

I’ve had unprotected sex three times, with three different guys who are all clean of STDs. Is there a chance that I could still have an STD? I’m on the Nexplanon also.

An STD or STI stands for sexually transmitted disease or infection. Teen Clinic, however, chooses to use the word infection instead of disease. The term disease can imply a clear medical problem with obvious signs or symptoms, but most sexually transmitted infections have no signs or symptoms, so we prefer the word infection.

It’s good to know that when it comes to STIs, there are four modes of transmission.  They are…

  • Blood
  • Semen
  • Vaginal fluids
  • Skin to skin contact

In order for someone to contract an STI, they would need to engage in sexual activity with a person who already has an STI in which one or more of these modes would come into play. Although STIs can be common, remember that they are preventable!

STIs can be transmitted through oral sex, anal sex, and vaginal sex. Many people think that with oral sex, there is little to no risk. But the fact is, you can get all STIs (except for pubic lice) when engaging in oral sex with someone who has the infection.

It’s important to know though that 75% of people with vaginas and 50% of people with penises show no symptoms of the most common infections! So even if you or your partners don’t have any symptoms of an infection, it’s still a good idea to get tested periodically.  Some people get tested every time they have a new partner, every 6 months, or even once a year based on their risk factors. You can test for STIs 14 days after sex to get an accurate result.

Furthermore, most of the time when people have routine STI testing, they are only tested for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea. For STIs like Herpes, HPV, Trichomoniasis, Syphilis, or Pubic Lice, tests are often only performed if symptoms are present- but when the STI is still transferable to other people. So if someone has “gotten tested,” it may not mean what you think.

Because of this, even if someone has said they’ve been tested, you can still be at risk of contracting an STI if you are having unprotected sex.

But the good news is that there are ways to prevent STI transmission from happening! Using a condom for oral sex on a penis will help drastically reduce your risk of transmitting an STI.  If oral sex is being performed on the vagina or anus, a dental dam can be used to help reduce your risk also! You can pick up free condoms and dental dams at Teen Clinic!

Female (or internal) condoms and male (or external) condoms will also help reduce STI transmission during anal or vaginal sex.

If you are engaging in any sexual activity where sperm may come in contact with the vagina, in addition to the possibility of contracting an STI, there is also risk of pregnancy when having unprotected sex. Because both the risk of contracting an STI and/or pregnancy are so high, it’s important to use a condom correctly, consistently, and 100% of the time! Because you are on the Nexplanon, you will be up to 99.9% protected from pregnancy!

Remember that the only 100% way to prevent STIs and pregnancy is to practice abstinence. Teen Clinic defines abstinence as refraining from oral, anal, and vaginal sex.

But for someone who is choosing not to practice abstinence, condoms, dental dams, and getting testing regularly will drastically reduce the risk of STI transmission.

To make an appointment at Teen Clinic or to get tested, give us a call the day before you’d like to come in.  All services are either free or low-cost.

I had unprotected sex with a boy, but the next day two of my friends said I should get myself checked out. What happens when you go to check for STDs?

…What do the doctors do?

This is a really great and important question!

When testing for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea, someone has to wait at least 2 weeks before getting tested. If someone did contract Chlamydia or Gonorrhea, it will only show an accurate result 14 days after exposure. To test for these STIs, someone will usually urinate in a cup. The lab will be able to test the urine for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea and you will get results within 1-2 weeks.

When testing for Syphilis or HIV, the usual time period that you have to wait is 3 months. After 3 months, someone will receive an accurate result. To test for these STIs, someone will usually have their blood drawn. The lab will test the blood and you will get results within 1-2 weeks. Boulder Teen Clinic also offers rapid HIV testing the first two Tuesdays of every month with the help of BCAP (Boulder County AIDS Project). During the rapid testing, someone will have their finger pricked and will know within 10 Minutes if they have HIV antibodies.

With other STIs like HPV, Trichomoniasis, Herpes, or Pubic Lice, you cannot test for the infection until you experience symptoms. Once you have symptoms, there are various tests that can be performed to confirm the presence of the infection. These tests could include but are not limited to visual tests or testing of discharge.

If you, or someone you know, believe you have an STI, abstain from any sexual contact until you can see a medical professional. You can also call Teen Clinic at 303-442-5160 to make an appointment or to talk with one of our medical professionals!

Check out this question for more information on how to prevent STIs!

How soon can I get tested for STIs after unprotected sex? I believe there’s a window, can you please give me more info?

This is a really great and important question!

The time frame for when someone can get tested for STIs (sexually transmitted infections) really depends on which STI we’re talking about.

When testing for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea, someone has to wait at least 2 weeks before getting tested. If someone did contract Chlamydia or Gonorrhea, it will only show an accurate result 14 days after exposure.

When testing for Syphilis or HIV, the usual time period that you have to wait is 3 months. After 3 months, someone will receive an accurate result.

With other STIs like HPV, Trichomoniasis, Herpes, or Pubic Lice, you cannot test for the infection until you experience symptoms. Once you have symptoms, there are tests that can be performed to confirm the presence of the infection.

If you, or someone you now, believe you have an STI, abstain from any sexual contact until you can see a medical professional. You can also call Teen Clinic at 303-442-5160 to make an appointment or to talk with one of our medical professionals!

What are the top three ways to prevent getting an STI?

First of all, great job taking charge of your sexual health and getting important information!

STI stands for sexually transmitted infection. Teen Clinic chooses to use the word infection instead of disease. The term disease can imply a clear medical problem with obvious signs or symptoms. However, most sexually transmitted infections have no signs or symptoms, so we prefer the word infection.

It’s good to know that when it comes to STIs, there are four modes of transmission.  They are…

  • Blood
  • Semen
  • Vaginal fluids
  • Skin to skin contact

In order for someone to contract an STI, they would need to engage in sexual activity with a person who already has an STI in which one or more of these modes would come into play. Although STIs can be common, remember that they are preventable!

STIs can be transmitted through oral sex, anal sex, and vaginal sex. Many people think that because oral sex isn’t necessarily penetration, there is little to no risk. But the fact is, you can get all STIs (except for pubic lice) when engaging in oral sex with someone who has the infection.

But the good news is that there are ways to prevent STI transmission from happening! Using a condom for oral sex on a penis will help drastically reduce your risk of transmitting an STI.  If oral sex is being performed on the vagina or anus, a dental dam can be used to help reduce your risk also! You can pick up free condoms and dental dams at Teen Clinic!

Female (or internal) condoms and male (or external) condoms will also help reduce STI transmission during anal or vaginal sex.

If you are engaging in any sexual activity where sperm may come in contact with the vagina, in addition to the possibility of contracting an STI, there is also risk of pregnancy when having unprotected sex. Because both the risk of contracting an STI and/or pregnancy are so high, it’s important to use a condom correctly, consistently, and 100% of the time!

It’s important to know though that 75% of people with vaginas and 50% of people with penises show no symptoms of the most common infections! So even if you or your partners don’t have any symptoms of an infection, it’s still a good idea to get tested periodically.  Some people get tested every time they have a new partner, every 6 months, or even once a year based on their risk factors. You can test for STIs 14 days after sex to get an accurate result.

Remember that the only 100% way to prevent STIs and pregnancy is to practice abstinence. Teen Clinic defines abstinence as refraining from oral, anal, and vaginal sex.

But for someone who is choosing not to practice abstinence, condoms, dental dams, and getting testing regularly will drastically reduce the risk of STI transmission.

To make an appointment at Teen Clinic or to get tested, give us a call the day before you’d like to come in.  All services are either free or low-cost to those under 20.

How do you know if you have an STI?

Getting tested regularly is a great way to make sure you do not have an STI. Many STIs can be asymptomatic, so getting tested is an important way to keep your body healthy. Curious about which tests you should ask for? Check out this guide on what is a good idea to be tested for.

It’s good to know that when it comes to STIs, there are four main modes of transmission.  They are…

  • Blood
  • Semen
  • Vaginal fluids
  • Skin to skin contact

In order for someone to contract an STI, they would need to engage in sexual activity with a person who already has an STI in which one or more of these modes would come into play. Although STIs can be common, remember that they are preventable!

If you are engaging in any sexual activity where sperm may come in contact with the vagina, in addition to the possibility of contracting an STI, there is also risk of pregnancy when having unprotected sex. Because both the risk of contracting an STI and/or pregnancy are so high, it’s important to use a condom correctly, consistently, and 100% of the time!

In the meantime, if you think you may have an infection, it’s a good idea to abstain from sex until you know for sure. Make an appointment at Teen Clinic as soon as possible. Get plenty of sleep, drink lots of water, and eat a balanced diet.  Help your body stay as healthy as possible! And try not to worry. Seeing a doctor is a great way to find out for sure. You’ll have the chance to ask lots of questions and get any treatment you need.

To make an appointment at Teen Clinic, give us a call the day before you’d like to come in.  All services are low-cost to those under 20.

I need a pregnancy test but I’m under 18 and I can’t get to Teen Clinic because I’m too young to drive…

…and I can’t have my mom or dad or anybody drive me because I don’t want them knowing. What do I do?

Thanks for asking! First, there is no age limit for purchasing a pregnancy test. If there is a pharmacy or grocery store within walking distance, you can buy a pregnancy test over the counter without any trouble.  Pregnancy tests are available at most Dollar Stores for just $1!  Otherwise, most cost $10-$20.  Some teens are most comfortable visiting a store with self-checkout; this is something you might consider.

Teen Clinic is also easily accessible by bus!  Check out this page to see which you’d need to hop on.

Last, consider talking to another trusted adult in your life. Do you have a mentor, sibling, teacher, or friend of the family you can turn to?  It’s important to feel supported as you make these big choices, and another adult may be able to help you get to Teen Clinic. If your pregnancy test is negative and you still plan on being sexually active, it’s a good idea to start a birth control method—so visiting Teen Clinic may be your best option. (At TC, pregnancy tests are either free or low cost and available on a walk-in basis.)

It’s smart that you’re figuring out your options—it’s important to know for sure whether or not you’re pregnant! Give us a call if we can help in any way.

How is chlamydia passed? Is it through skin to skin contact, or bodily fluids?

Great question!  Chlamydia is a bacterial infection spread through semen and vaginal fluid. It is not transmitted by blood or skin-to-skin contact.

The best way to prevent chlamydia is by abstaining from oral, anal, and vaginal sex. If you do choose to be sexually active, using barrier methods like condoms and dental dams can reduce the risk of transmission. Asking your partner to get tested before you become sexually active is also a great idea! Chlamydia testing is free or low-cost and confidential at Teen Clinic, and you can get tested on a walk-in basis.

For more information, see this page dedicated to the infection, or this page dedicated to questions teens have asked about chlamydia.

How long does it take untreated chlamydia to make a person infertile?


Great question! Unfortunately, there’s no easy answer to this question. Everyone’s body is different. While some immune systems are able to keep a chlamydial infection at bay for some time, others may struggle.

In females, infertility can occur when the infection spreads from the vaginal canal into the uterus (pelvic inflammatory disease) and chlamydia bacteria inflame the uterine lining (endometrium), causing scarring.  This scar tissue can prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the endometrium. It can also cause ectopic pregnancy, or pregnancy in the fallopian tubes, by blocking a fertilized egg from leaving the tubes.

In males, infertility occurs when chlamydia bacteria cause inflammation in the epididymis, a little sac in the testicles where sperm mature.  While this inflammation is occurring, sperm cannot appropriately mature, and will not form a pregnancy. However, males will likely become fertile again once the chlamydia has been treated.

Because it’s hard to predict how a person’s body will respond to chlamydia, it’s important to get tested once a year or after new partners. It’s a great idea to use condoms and bring your partners in to get tested before you become sexually active with them! Remember, chlamydia and gonorrhea don’t have symptoms about 70% of the time.  Once a person tests positive for chlamydia, we treat them as soon as possible to prevent permanent damage and further spread of the infection.

At Teen Clinic, you can get tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea on a walk-in basis!  Stop by anytime we’re open or give us a call for more details.

Is your clinic only for girls, or can boys go there to get tested for an STI too?

What a great question! Teen Clinic offers free or low-cost, confidential care to everyone under 20, whether male, female, or intersex. If you are under 18, all of your services at Teen Clinic will be free. But if you are 18 or 19, there may be a small flat fee for your services based on your income.

On a walk-in basis, males can get tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea, access our free monthly HIV testing, or pick up Plan B for a female partner. Males should make an appointment if they are experiencing the symptoms of an infection or if they want to receive Gardasil (the HPV vaccine). And, of course, males are always welcome to stop by Teen Clinic to grab a handful of condoms!  Teen Clinic can also be a resource for questions about sexuality, how to use a condom, or talking to your parents about sex.

We often think of females when we think of sexual health, but birth control and STI-related services are just as important for males!  Thanks for taking the initiative to take care of your health, and spread the word!