Here Is What You Need To Know About Chlamydia And Gonorrhea
January 20, 2022 by Elodie Takamiya
Chlamydia is the most reported sexually transmitted infection in the United States. Its relative, gonorrhea, is the second most common STI. Both are caused by bacteria and can have disastrous, long-term consequences on a womans health. This is especially the case if she doesnt receive treatment immediately. In this article, you will find useful information that will help you to be proactive with your health. Without further ado, here is what you need to know about chlamydia and gonorrhea.
Chlamydia Can Sometimes Go Away On Its Own
Some diseases and infections can go away on their own, so its not surprising that people wonder: does chlamydia go away on its own? The truth is, it sometimes does. In about 20% of people who have no symptoms, chlamydia may resolve spontaneously without treatment. It means that under certain circumstances host immune responses can control chlamydia naturally.
Untreated chlamydia can go on without any symptoms for a long period of time. Thats why its so important to get tested and catch it early. When chlamydia isnt treated, it can cause a number of serious complications. In women, the infection can spread to the uterus and uterine tubes, while in men, it can spread to the prostate gland. Chlamydia can also cause reactive arthritis, which affects your joints and eyes.
When chlamydia isnt treated, it can cause a number of serious complications.
Some people claim that chlamydia can be treated with home remedies like garlic and turmeric, but these methods are unproven and should be avoided. The only proven cure for chlamydia is treatment with antibiotics, which usually clear up the infection in a week or two.
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Is There A Cure For Chlamydia And Gonorrhea
Yes. Chlamydia and gonorrhea can both be cured with the right treatment. If these STDs arent treated, they can cause serious health problems, like making it difficult or impossible for a woman to get pregnant.
If you have an STD, its important to get treatment right away. Its also important to tell anyone youve had sex with that you have an STD so they can get treated, too. This can help protect you from getting infected again.
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How Does The Test Work
Simply enter your postcode and date of birth to order your test kit.
The test kit includes either a pot for a urine sample or a swab, a form, safe packaging and a freepost envelope.
When your kit arrives, fill out the short form in capital letters. Fill in the label and stick it on the screw top bottle. Follow the instructions provided to take your sample and then post it off with your form in the freepost envelope.
Supply of swabs is currently limited as a result of coronavirus testing so some people who would normally receive a swab kit may receive a urine sample kit instead.
If youre taking a urine sample, make sure you havent peed within the last one hour if you have, wait until later.
Regular tests help reduce the risk and spread of infection so keep testing!
Do You Need Protection From Chlamydia When Performing Oral Sex
Chlamydia passed through oral is not uncommon, so you definitely need to use protection during oral sex.
The most effective way to prevent getting exposed to the Chlamydia trachomatis bacteria is by using a condom or dental dam, or another barrier method, during oral sex.
These methods provide an effective barrier between your mouth and the genitals getting attention during oral sex.
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Complications Of Oral Chlamydia
Chlamydia of the throat does not lead to complications in that area. The biggest concern with oral chlamydia is that people without symptoms are more likely to continue having sex and spreading the infection to other people.
Long-standing chlamydia infection most commonly leads to pelvic inflammatory disease , an infection and inflammation of the uterus and fallopian tubes. People with PID often have difficulties getting pregnant or are at risk of ectopic pregnancy.
Chlamydia infection can also cause an inflammatory reaction throughout the body that causes joint pain or conjunctivitis, an inflammation or infection in the eye.
What Should I Do If I Have Chlamydia
Chlamydia is easy to treat. But you need to be tested and treated as soon as possible.
If you have chlamydia:
- See a doctor or nurse as soon as possible. Antibiotics will treat chlamydia, but they will not fix any permanent damage to your reproductive organs.
- Take all of your medicine. Even if symptoms go away, you need to finish all of the antibiotics.
- Tell your sex partner so they can be tested and treated. If they are not tested and treated you could get chlamydia again.
- Avoid sexual contact until you and your partner have been treated and cured. Even after you finish your antibiotics, you can get chlamydia again if you have sex with someone who has chlamydia.
- See your doctor or nurse again if you have symptoms that dont go away within a few days after finishing the antibiotics.
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Tests To Determine If You Have Chlamydia
There are several tests that can detect the presence of the bacteria that causes chlamydia. You can provide a sample of urine thats analyzed in a laboratory to determine if chlamydia infection is present. With other tests, a health care professional takes a swab of a mans urethra or a womans cervix and sends the swab to the laboratory for analysis.
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How Will I Know If The Chlamydia Has Affected My Fertility
Chlamydia is just one of many factors that can affect your fertility. Most people whove had chlamydia wont become infertile or have an ectopic pregnancy . If youve had chlamydia you wont normally be offered any routine tests to see if youre fertile unless you or a partner are having difficulty getting pregnant. If youre concerned, talk to your doctor or practice nurse.
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When Should I Get An At
You may consider using an at-home chlamydia test if STD testing conducted by a doctor is unavailable or inconvenient. While testing for chlamydia at home may be appropriate for screening certain people, at-home test kits should not be used if you have active symptoms of chlamydia or if you have a sexual partner that has been diagnosed with this condition.
To diagnose or rule out chlamydia, you should talk to your doctor about the benefits and drawbacks of at-home chlamydia testing.
Is It A Urinary Tract Infection Or Chlamydia
The only way to find out is to see a doctor and have the necessary tests done. As the symptoms of a urinary tract infection , chlamydia and other sexually transmitted diseases can often be similar, you wont be able to know by checking any symptoms you might have against lists you can find online.
A urinary tract infection is an infection in any part of the urinary system. Most infections involve the lower urinary tract the bladder and the urethra. More seriously, the infection can spread to the kidneys or ureter. UTIs are more common in women than men.
Urinary tract infections are usually caused by bacteria entering the urinary tract through the urethra and beginning to multiply in the bladder. The E. coli bacteria is implicated in many UTIs, particularly those affecting the bladder . Other bacterial infections can cause UTI.
Chlamydia is caused by infection with the Chlamydia trachomatis bacteria.
Some of the symptoms of a UTI and chlamydia are similar, including painful urination and lower abdominal pain. However discharge from the vagina or penis is usually chlamydia or another sexually transmitted disease, rather than a UTI. Some changes to urination, including a persistent desire to urinate, urine of a cloudy appearance and urine that appears red or darker, are more associated with UTI than chlamydia.
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Recognizing Symptoms Of Chlamydia In The Genital Region
What Can Happen If Chlamydia Is Not Treated
Untreated chlamydia can cause serious health problems in women, including:
- Pelvic inflammatory disease , an infection of a woman’s reproductive organs. PID can lead to chronic pelvic pain, pregnancy problems, and infertility . Untreated chlamydia is a common cause of PID. It affects about 10% to 15% of women with untreated chlamydia.4
- Increased risk of getting HIV from sexual activity
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What Are The Symptoms Of Chlamydia
If you do notice symptoms, youll likely experience them differently based on your reproductive anatomy. Many of the symptoms that cisgender women experience can also affect transgender men and nonbinary individuals with vaginas. Many of the symptoms that cisgender men notice can affect transgender women and nonbinary individuals with penises, too.
Signs of chlamydia if you have a vagina
Chlamydia bacteria often cause symptoms that are similar to cervicitis or a urinary tract infection . You may notice:
- White, yellow or gray discharge from your vagina that may be smelly.
- Pus in your urine .
- Increased need to pee.
- Itching or burning in and around your vagina.
- Dull pain in the lower part of your abdomen.
Signs of chlamydia if you have a penis
Chlamydia bacteria most often infect your urethra, causing symptoms that are similar to nongonococcal urethritis. You may notice:
- Mucus-like or clear, watery discharge from your penis.
- Pain or a burning sensation when you pee .
Signs of chlamydia that all genders may notice
Chlamydia can affect parts of your body other than your reproductive organs, such as your:
- Anus. You may notice pain, discomfort, bleeding or a mucus-like discharge from your bottom.
- Throat. You may have a sore throat, but you usually wont notice symptoms if the bacterias in your throat.
- Eyes. You may notice symptoms of conjunctivitis if C. trachomatis bacteria gets in your eye. Symptoms include redness, pain and discharge.
What Happens If I Dont Get Treated
The initial damage that chlamydia causes often goes unnoticed. However, chlamydia can lead to serious health problems.
If you are a woman, untreated chlamydia can spread to your uterus and fallopian tubes . This can cause pelvic inflammatory disease . PID often has no symptoms, however some women may have abdominal and pelvic pain. Even if it doesnt cause symptoms initially, PID can cause permanent damage to your reproductive system. PID can lead to long-term pelvic pain, inability to get pregnant, and potentially deadly ectopic pregnancy .
Men rarely have health problems linked to chlamydia. Infection sometimes spreads to the tube that carries sperm from the testicles, causing pain and fever. Rarely, chlamydia can prevent a man from being able to have children.
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What Can Happen If Chlamydia Isnt Treated
Untreated chlamydia can put your health at risk. Make an appointment with your provider immediately if you notice any symptoms of chlamydia, and get regular STI screenings to avoid complications later.
Complications of chlamydia for people with vaginas
Untreated chlamydia can cause:
- Pelvic inflammatory disease . PID is a serious condition that requires hospitalization. It can occur when an untreated STI, like chlamydia, damages your reproductive organs. PID can lead to infertility and chronic pelvic pain. It can also cause an ectopic pregnancy,which is life-threatening for the fetus and potentially deadly for the mother or gestational parent, too.
- Pregnancy complications. An untreated infection can lead to pre-term delivery. Also, if youre pregnant and have chlamydia, you can pass the infection on to your newborn. Babies born with chlamydia may have pneumonia or conjunctivitis that could lead to blindness if not treated.
Complications of chlamydia for people with penises
Untreated chlamydia can cause:
- Epididymitis. Infection can spread to the testicles and the tube that carries sperm to your testicles , causing symptoms like pain, swelling and tenderness in your testicles.
- Reduced fertility. Chlamydia can harm your sperm, negatively impacting your ability to conceive.
Complications of chlamydia that can affect all genders
Untreated chlamydia can:
What Happens If Chlamydia Isn’t Treated
Only some people who have chlamydia will have complications. If chlamydia is treated early, its unlikely to cause any long-term problems. But, without proper treatment, the infection can spread to other parts of the body. The more times you have chlamydia the more likely you are to get complications.
- If you have a vulva, chlamydia can spread to other reproductive organs causing pelvic inflammatory disease . This can lead to long-term pelvic pain, blocked fallopian tubes, infertility and ectopic pregnancy .
- In people with a vulva, chlamydia can also cause pain and inflammation around the liver, though this is rare. This usually gets better with the correct antibiotic treatment.
- If you have a penis, chlamydia can lead to infection in the testicles. If this isnt treated, theres a possibility it could affect your fertility but more research is needed to understand how likely this is.
- Rarely, chlamydia can lead to inflammation of the joints. This is known as Sexually Acquired Reactive Arthritis and is sometimes accompanied by inflammation of the urethra and the eye. This is more likely to occur in people with a penis than people with a vulva.
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How Can I Reduce My Chances Of Getting Chlamydia
The only way to avoid STIs is to not have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.
If you are sexually active, you can do the following things to lower your chances of getting chlamydia:
PrEP, Pre Exposure Prophylaxis, a pill taken daily to prevent HIV infection, will NOT protect you from chlamydia. PrEP is also known by the brand name Truvada or Descovy.
Having chlamydia once does NOT protect you from getting it again.
For more information, visit CDCs chlamydia webpage featuring factsheets, posters, videos, statistics and more. Please contact your local health department for questions and reporting issues.
To submit a question or comment to the HIV/STD/HepC Program, please click on the suggestion box to access our online form.
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Exactly How Common Is Chlamydia
In 2017, more than 1.7 million instances of chlamydia were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Nevertheless, numerous situations go unreported, so the genuine variety of chlamydia infections every year might be closer to 3 million.
Males and female can both get the infection, but much more situations in women are reported.
Infection prices are greatest amongst more youthful ladies, with the greatest rates of infection happening in women in between ages 15 and 24.
The CDC advises that all sexually active females ages 25 years as well as younger get screened for chlamydia each year, in addition to older ladies with threat variables like numerous or brand-new companions.
Statistically, a person is more likely to get an STI if they have actually had sex with greater than a single person. Other threat factors include having had an STI in the past, or presently have an infection since this could lower resistance.
Prices for chlamydia and also other STIs have been climbing up in recent times.
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How Can I Tell If I Have
The only way to properly check for the presence of this sexually-transmitted infection is through a laboratory test. A swab is taken from just inside the urethra in men or from the urethra or cervix in women, and then sent to a lab for identification. The problem is that the Chlamydia trachomatis bacterium the most common cause of infertility in women provokes very little in the way of symptoms for the vast majority of those infected.
About 70% of infected women will have no symptoms at all. In the remaining 30%, the symptoms cystitis or pain in the lower abdomen, for example are often so general that they are confused with other problems.
In last weeks Lancet Gordon Scott, a consultant in genito-urinary medicine at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, reported that nearly one in 10 of the young men he had tested were infected with the bacterium, and nearly 90% of them had no symptoms.
The disease holds far more danger to women than men, but in a small number of cases among young men chlamydia can cause acutely inflamed testicles. It is also a well-known cause of joint problems in men, and very rarely infertility.