The British Association for Sexual Health and HIV believe that dating apps – such as Tinder and Grindr – are behind an increasing rate of sexually transmitted diseases among young people.
Thanks to these apps it is now pretty easy to hook-up and while this can be great, the more people you sleep with (and the quicker you switch from one person to another) the more likely you are to catch an infection.
Which a lot of people seem to be doing.
Syphilis, for example – which sounds like it belongs in the Victorian era, not in your pants – had a 33% increase in 2014, and gonorrhoea went up by 19%. While these STDs are treated easily enough, doctors also fear that we are ‘at a tipping point for HIV’, and earlier this year, a strain of ‘super gonorrhoea’ that is resistant to antibiotics broke out in Leeds – gross.
Not everybody, however, agrees that dating apps are to blame for this rise in STDs. Marie Cosnard, head of trends at Happn, told the BBC:
“Dating apps are following wider social trends and changing behaviours that have been unfolding for decades.
There’s a liberalisation of attitudes towards the number of partners, the status of relationships, towards marriage, divorce, etc. So the rise of any STI is not really connected to dating apps themselves. The problem is much wider.
People need to be more educated in terms of sexual health and to take their responsibilities, no matter how and where they’ve met their partner.
It’s not just in the UK that dating apps are being forced to deny links to (very unsexy) STDs.
Over in the USA, Tinder was recently forced to send a ‘cease and desist’ after a healthcare organisation published controversial billboards around Los Angeles that linked the popular dating app to chlamydia.
Between 25 and 40% of new relationships start on dating apps these days, and we see no reason why people shouldn’t play the field.
But as sexy as ‘super gonorrhoea’ sounds, we imagine it doesn’t look all that pretty, so just remember to wrap your (or your new found friend’s) willy up, and keep those nasty STDs at bay.