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The latest report is out, and it's not good.

Sexually transmitted diseases are on the rise in Florida and Hillsborough County has been hit especially hard. New numbers from the Florida Department of Health reveal a frightening trend: Chlamydia.

In 2003, just over 42,000 cases were reported. That number jumped to more than 77,000 cases in 2012.
Hillsborough County reported more than 7,100 cases. Gonorrhea and Syphilis are up as well.

Dr. Jose De La Rocha sees it first hand every day.

"Within the last two years, it's exploded," said De La Rocha.

He treats hundreds of patients at his walk in clinic, First Care, on Waters in Tampa.

"It's the highest I've ever seen it, and I've been doing this for 22 years," said De La Rocha.

But why?

De La Rocha explains for many parents, sex is taboo. They are reluctant to talk to their children about the dangers of sex, and schools have shied away from the controversy of sex education.

"I think education has a lot to do with it. Number one, I think the schools are not teaching it--especially the youngsters; and secondly the family dynamic has changed. I mean they are more sexually active," said De La Rocha.

De La Rocha says STDs cross every socio-economic status, from the very poor to the very rich, young and old, but he says disease is easy to prevent.

"Start showing that this is a problem and we need to control it, because it is like a loaded gun: if you get it, you're going to pass it on and there's no stopping in unless you act," added De La Rocha.

Health officials say the best prevention is an education and to not engage in risky sexual behavior.

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