It's never a good time for a pandemic ... but with yet another record round of reported cases of sexually transmitted diseases, health experts say the timing of the COVID-19 crisis is extremely tough because it is impacting care for these STDs in a big way.

"The ongoing pandemic has really limited the availability of testing and treatment services for sexually transmitted infections, which means more STIs are going undetected and untreated," said Cory Neering, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Northern, Central, and Southern New Jersey.

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Planned Parenthood is encouraging people to "take charge of their sexual health" by getting tested and talking to their partners about getting tested and practicing safer sex.

According to a recent update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reported STDs in the United States hit an all-time high for the sixth consecutive year in 2019. More than 2.5 million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis were reported that year, right before the coronavirus pandemic started affecting the nation.

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Neering suggested the only way to "fail an STI test" is to not take one. Most STI cases have no symptoms, but the infection can still be transmitted.

"The fact is, all STIs, including HIV, are treatable, and most are curable," Neering said.

NJ towns with the highest STD increases

Below is a list of the New Jersey municipalities that saw the highest percentage increases in STDs between 2012 and 2019, the most recent years for which state Department of Health data is available. Below that are the municipalities that had the highest rate of infections in 2019.

  • 32

    Springfield

    Union County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 50
    Increase from '12: 150%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 3.0

  • 31

    Tabernacle

    Burlington

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 30
    Increase from '12: 150%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 4.4

  • 30

    Paramus

    Bergen

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 63
    Increase from '12: 152%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 2.4

  • 29

    Washington Township

    Morris

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 33
    Increase from '12: 154%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 1.7

  • 28

    New Milford

    Bergen

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 46
    Increase from '12: 156%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 2.3

  • 27

    Deptford

    Gloucester County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 279
    Increase from '12: 166%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 9.1

  • 26

    Wood-Ridge

    Bergen

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 27
    Increase from '12: 170%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 3.0

  • 25

    Wayne

    Passaic County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 125
    Increase from '12: 178%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 2.3

  • 24

    Point Pleasant

    Ocean County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 56
    Increase from '12: 180%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 12.3

  • 23

    Bound Brook

    Somerset

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 71
    Increase from '12: 184%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 6.8

  • 22

    Palisades Park

    Bergen County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 69
    Increase from '12: 188%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 3.4

  • 21

    Montgomery

    Somerset County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 49
    Increase from '12: 188%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 2.2

  • 20

    Buena Vista

    Atlantic County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 32
    Increase from '12: 191%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 4.3

  • 19

    Millstone Township

    Monmouth County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 41
    Increase from '12: 193%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 3.9

  • 18

    Harrison

    Hudson County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 106
    Increase from '12: 194%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 7.4

  • 17

    Livingston

    Essex County

    "b>Total STDs reported in 2019: 65
    Increase from '12: 195%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 2.2

  • 16

    Secaucus

    Hudson County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 65
    Increase from '12: 195%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 3.8

  • 15

    Upper Deerfield

    Cumberland County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 62
    Increase from '12: 210%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 8.3

  • 14

    Fairfield

    Cumberland County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 61
    Increase from '12: 221%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 10.0

  • 13

    North Haledon

    Passaic County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 45
    Increase from '12: 221%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 5.3

  • 12

    Westwood

    Bergen County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 39
    Increase from '12: 225%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 3.4

  • 11

    Ocean Township

    Ocean County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 33
    Increase from '12: 230%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 3.6

  • 10

    Stafford

    Ocean County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 69
    Increase from '12: 245%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 2.6

  • 9

    Weehawken

    Hudson County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 76
    Increase from '12: 245%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 5.8

  • 8

    Dover

    Morris County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 155
    Increase from '12: 252%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 8.3

  • 7

    Wyckoff

    Bergen County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 36
    Increase from '12: 260%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 2.1

  • 6

    Fairview

    Bergen County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 83
    Increase from '12: 261%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 5.7

  • 5

    Little Ferry

    Bergen County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 65
    Increase from '12: 261%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 5.9

  • 4

    Bergenfield

    Bergen County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 120
    Increase from '12: 275%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 4.4

  • 3

    Bordentown Township

    Burlington County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 61
    Increase from '12: 307%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 5.0

  • 2

    Woolwich

    Gloucester County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 59
    Increase from '12: 321%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 4.7

  • 1

    Bernards

    Somerset County

    Total STDs reported in 2019: 51
    Increase from '12: 364%
    Rate per 1,000 residents: 1.9