How to keep escorting with a sexually transmitted disease

It’s common sense to know that the more risks you take, the more you increase potential for harm. Escorts who work their entire careers and never contract a sexually transmitted infection or disease are lucky. Yet escorts who become infected with an STD, don’t have to give up their careers.

Like this

Even though it may seem that living with a diagnosis is an automatic pink slip in the escort industry, there are ways to continue working through treatment and prevention.

Several STDs exist in the United States and have high transmission rates. Here are some of the most common infections escorts should know about:

  • Bacterial vaginosis: Typically contracted as a result of multiple sexual partners, bacterial vaginosis is the imbalance of bacteria in a woman’s vagina. It is treatable with antibiotics, but it may clear up on its own. It can recur and is the most common vaginal infection reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While it is not an STD, itself, it causes a woman to be 10 times more susceptible to other sexually transmitted infections.
  • Chlamydia: Chlamydia is the most commonly reported STD in the world. Nearly 3 million new cases are reported annually. Left untreated, it can irreversibly damage a woman’s reproductive organs, leaving her infertile. There are few symptoms related to Chlamydia, although some patients report irregular discharge. It can be cured with a seven-day course of antibiotics.
  • Gonorrhea: Also known as “the clap”, gonorrhea can affect a patient’s anus, mouth, throat, eyes and genitals. Men experience burning during urination and a white/yellow discharge from their penises. Women have fewer symptoms, but they may find it painful to urinate, spot between periods or notice increased discharge. It can affect fertility or spread to blood and joints, which can be life threatening when untreated. It can be cured with medication.
  • Genital herpes: Caused by the Herpes Simplex virus type 1 or 2, genital herpes reveals itself with blisters that turn to sores around the genitals, rectum or mouth. One in six people in the United States between 14 and 49 years old have genital herpes, and transmission is most likely to occur from an infected man to an uninfected woman, rather than the reverse. Outbreaks decrease over time, although the disease is still contagious even when sores or blisters are not present. There is no cure for genital herpes. Outbreaks may be shortened or prevented through medications. Daily suppressive therapies may help avoid transmitting it to partners.
  • HPV (genital human papillomavirus): There are over 40 types of HPV, and they can affect the genitals, mouth or throat. The infection may be dormant in your body for several years before symptoms are present. Some types cause genital warts, while others cause cervical or other types of cancer. The disease usually goes away on its own, but treatment may be necessary to remove genital warts. Abnormal cervical cells that have not progressed to a cancerous stage usually correct themselves, although cells with high levels of dysplasia will need attention.
  • Syphilis: Not as common as it was half a century ago, Syphilis can be a very serious infection. However, if caught in its early stages, it is very easy to cure with antibiotics. Symptoms include sores on the genitals, anus and mouth or a rash on the body, palms or soles of feet. Over 60 percent of recent cases reported to the CDC involved male-to-male partners. It may take up to 90 days after infection to notice the first symptoms. Patients are advised to abstain from any sexual contact until all sores are fully healed and antibiotics are completed.
  • Trichomoniasis: Trichomoniasis usually infects women in their 30s or older, but it may affect men, too. The CDC reports that 3.7 million people in the U.S. have it, but only 30 percent develop symptoms. Itching, irritation or burning and a slight discharge may signal the beginning of this infection. It is cured with a single dose of antibiotics, but patients are discouraged from sexual contact for at least one week.

Regardless of which STD you’ve been diagnosed with, there are several things to consider when continuing your career. Utilize these steps to keep escorting:

  • Get a clear diagnosis. Some physicians simply share the news and give you a prescription, and that’s that. Don’t allow your doctor to leave the room until you have asked enough questions to know more about your diagnosis. Ask for the specific name of your infection and any basic facts that your doctor will share with you. It’s important to know your prognosis. Inquire about how long you’ll be infected, how to treat recurrences (if applicable), treatment options and any short- or long-term implications. If you don’t have a chance to ask questions at the time of diagnosis, schedule another visit to learn more.
  • Get educated about your infection. Your doctor should be the first provider of information for you about your condition. However, you may be able to learn even more by searching online. Look on the CDC website or other medical sites such as MayoClinic.org or WebMD.com. These sites will not only give you information about your diagnosis, but they may also be able to shed light on how common your infection is and the number of other people in the U.S. who are also infected. If you don’t find the facts you are looking for online, contact your local women’s clinic.
  • Know how you got it. Because you know the potential hazards of a lapse in good judgment, odds are against the fact that you contracted your infection by failing to use a condom during an encounter. However, it is possible to become infected through skin-to-skin contact in affected areas not protected by a condom. For instance, a man’s testicles may have sores or lesions on them that can spread an infection. Additionally, if you allowed contact prior to putting on a condom, many infections may be spread without actual intercourse. Many escorts are in monogamous relationships in their personal lives. If a partner strays and becomes infected with an STD, an escort may easily contract the disease, too, especially if condom use is not a part of the couple’s routine. It’s important to review your intimate moments over the past 30 days or so to determine where the infection came from. If one of your clients infected you, you should block him from future encounters, if he knew he had a problem.
  • Notify clients whom you may have infected. After getting your diagnosis, the responsible thing to do is to inform recently-seen clients that you received a positive STD test result. Review the clients you visited within the incubation period your doctor told you about and make calls to them. Encourage them to get tested, too, and seek treatment, if necessary. While there is nothing you can do to make up for infecting a client, attempt to explain that you contracted the STI despite your best efforts to protect yourself. Offer to make it up to your client, if he or she wishes, when it’s safe to work again.
  • Consider therapy or counseling. There is a negative stigma attached to being diagnosed with an STD. Many patients feel dirty, ashamed and deceived. It’s important to realize that you’re not alone in your diagnosis. According to the CDC, one-half of the sexually active population will get HPV sometime during their lifetimes. Nineteen million new STD infections are reported to the CDC each year, and one in five adults have herpes. Look for an STD support group or seek out a therapist who may help you work through emotions associated with your diagnosis. You may have anxiety or anger to deal with, along with fears about the future, depending on what STD you contracted.
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle. Doctors advise people who have an STD to make efforts to be health-conscious. Eating a nutritious diet, getting adequate rest and reducing stress helps the body be strong, enabling it to fight off an infection. Additionally, studies show that living a healthy life is linked with fewer outbreaks in herpes patients.
  • Engage in treatment. If the doctor prescribes an antibiotic for you to take for seven days, take it for the full time. Cutting short your treatment may fail to cure your infection. Additionally, take any medications your doctor prescribes that may help you to avoid outbreaks, reduce symptoms and decrease the chances you will spread the disease to anybody else. Utilizing medicine as recommended to keep you and your clients healthy is the only responsible option for an escort who wants to continue working.
  • Avoid returning to work until you get a clean bill of health. Unless you’ve contracted an incurable STD, wait until the doctor says it’s safe to begin having intercourse. Usually, this is for the duration of treatment or until sores heal. Typically, you may be off work for a week or two when you get an infection. Use this time to update any marketing communication tasks you’ve been meaning to tackle.
  • Continue using protection. When you return to work after receiving initial treatment, never fail to use a condom with clients. STD transmission is rarely associated with a broken condom, and often linked back to improper use. Never allow genital-to-genital contact; put on a condom before any intimate activities begin. Request that your clients wear latex or polyurethane condoms. Do not allow clients to wear lambskin condoms; they do not protect against STDs. Always be sure to put on a new condom with each new sex act: when switching from vaginal sex to anal sex, change condoms, for example. When using lube, pick water-based options such as KY Jelly, Astroglide or glycerin. Other types of lubes may weaken condoms.
  • Avoid seeing clients when you’re having an outbreak. If you’ve got herpes, becoming intimate with clients during an outbreak increases the chance that you may spread the disease. Once your outbreak is healed up, feel free to resume activities with your clients. Always be on the lookout for the start of an outbreak and use extreme caution.
  • Disclose your status to clients. If you are diagnosed with an incurable STI, it’s only fair to inform your clients. Educate them about the precautions you take, the treatment you undergo and any other things that will help them understand that sex with you is still safe, as long as you both act responsibly. However, in all fairness, you may lose a few clients who aren’t willing to take the risk of possible transmission, despite your best efforts to keep them safe.
  • Look for clients with your STD. Clients who are already infected with what you have won’t be at risk of transmission of the disease. While condom use is still paramount, any anxieties about spreading the STD to a client will be decreased. Many clients are looking for an escort who isn’t squeamish about their particular infection. You may pick up enough clients to replace the number you lost after disclosing your status to your regulars.
  • Retest frequently. When you have contracted an STD, it makes your immune system even more susceptible to other infections you don’t already have. Even if you were able to cure a past infection with antibiotics or other treatment, your body may have picked up something else in the meanwhile. And, as an escort, you are constantly putting yourself at risk. Retesting every three or four months should be the standard for all escorts, but especially someone who has experienced issues with her sexual health.