Is Monkeypox an STD?

The first thing that comes to mind when you hear “monkeypox” is probably the disease that caused a worldwide panic in the early 2000s. The obvious question on everyone’s mind was, “How do I get it?” Well, as it turns out, monkey pox is not an STD and can’t be passed between people by having sex. So if you’re worried about catching monkeypox from your partner, don’t be: It’s not possible.

Monkey Pox is NOT an STD

Monkey Pox is NOT an STD. Monkeypox, or monkeypox virus (MPXV) disease is a viral infection that primarily affects monkeys and other wild animals. It can also be found in humans who handle infected animals or consume food products made from infected animals.

Monkeypox can be spread through sexual contact, kissing or hugging of humans infected with MPXV infections if an infected area is being touched with bare skin from the other person. It can also spread through bodily fluids and by coughing or sneezing in someone else’s face and then having them breathe the infected air in. 

What is Monkeypox?

Monkeypox is a viral disease that can affect humans and other primates. It’s caused by a virus called monkeypox virus, which spreads from animals to people.

The virus can be spread through the air (coughing, sneezing) or direct contact with an infected person’s body fluids (like semen, saliva, urine, tears or sweat). It can also be passed through indirect contact with contaminated objects like bedding and clothing.

Monkeypox is considered a rare disease in the U.S., but it has been seen in West African countries such as Ghana and Nigeria since 1970. In 2014 and 2015 there were outbreaks in parts of Africa where monkeys live in close proximity to humans — especially those who hunt wild animals for food.

Are there complications that can come from having Monkeypox?

  • Can cause blindness
  • Can cause death
  • Can cause encephalitis
  • Can cause meningitis
  • Can cause pneumonia
  • Can cause hepatitis (liver inflammation) and other organ failure. These are very rare complications of monkeypox.
monkeypox std

Is there a treatment for Monkeypox?

Monkeypox is a viral disease that can be treated with antiviral medicine, but there isn’t a specific treatment for the condition. Most people will recover on their own in about five to six weeks.

Doctors may prescribe antiviral drugs if you have monkeypox symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

You’ll also need to stay away from others during the contagious period of time after you’ve been infected by the virus. The CDC recommends taking these precautions:

  • Stay home from work or school until all your symptoms stop and your fever has gone down.
  • Avoid close contact with other people. 
  • If you’re caring for someone who has monkeypox, wear gloves and take regular breaks outside of their room.

How can you prevent catching/spreading Monkeypox?

To avoid catching or spreading monkeypox, it’s important to avoid all sexual contact. Also, wearing a face mask is very important if you are taking care of someone who has monkeypox. 

You cannot kiss someone who has active monkeypox in order to avoid getting infected; this will also help keep you from spreading the virus to others. If you have any concerns that you may have been exposed to the virus, seek medical attention immediately so they can give you antiviral treatment as soon as possible.

If someone around you becomes sick with an illness that could be caused by monkeypox, wash your hands often and avoid contact with their body fluids (saliva, mucus, urine) until they get better. You should also stay away from animals that seem sick or dead if possible because these animals could be carrying the virus as well!

Monkeypox and Sex

The virus that causes monkeypox is contagious. You can get or give it by having sex with an infected person. Sexually transmitted diseases like herpes and syphilis are passed through genital contact, and monkey pox can certainly be passed this way too if there are sores present.

Monkeypox is transmitted by kissing as well. It’s can even be transmitted through oral sex. The only way you can catch this illness is by coming into direct contact with the saliva, blood or fluid from a person who has an active case of monkeypox. It is especially important to not touch your mouth or eyes after touching said fluid if you suspect it to be infected with monkeypox.


is monkeypox an sti

So there you have it—monkey pox is like an STD, though you do not have to have sex to spread it. It is a highly contagious viral disease that spreads through close contact with infected people or animals. Monkey pox causes symptoms in those infected similar to smallpox, but the good news is that treatments for monkeypox are available. The virus is most common in Africa and Asia, but there have been cases of people getting infected outside these regions too.

Medically Reviewed by on November 8, 2022

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Author: Esther Jordan

Esther Jordan has been a writer ever since she can remember. She has always loved the free gift of self-expression through journaling, creating stories, and sharing life experiences in front of audiences. Public speaking and creating content has been a strong suit of hers since high school. Immediately after college, she received a paid position as an search engine optimization (SEO) writer in 2010 when SEO was still a very brick and mortar concept for a lot of small businesses. It was a time of do-it-yourself websites and online magic that everyone wanted and either referred to it as SEO or pay-per-click (PPC).