Young Sexually Active Women Are Most Susceptible
Women between ages 15 and 24 are most likely to be newly infected with chlamydia, according to the CDC, but anyone who is sexually active male or female can be infected. Men who have oral or anal sex with men are also at risk, notes the CDC. The CDC recommends regular chlamydia screenings for people at an increased risk of contracting it.
You should be screened annually for chlamydia if you are:
- A sexually active woman under age 25
- A woman age 25 or older who has multiple sexual partners
- A woman whose sexual partner may have multiple sexual partners
- Pregnant and under age 25 or pregnant and age 25 or older with an increased risk
- A man who has sex with men
- At an increased risk for other health reasons
I would emphasize that young women should be screened if they engage in any sexual behavior that puts them at risk because often has no symptoms, and early treatment is important to avoid long-term damage and infertility, Dr. Schaffir says.
Screening for chlamydia is painless: It usually involves testing a urine sample or a specimen swabbed from the vagina or penis. Some lab tests for chlamydia can use specimens from the throat or rectum.
What Are The Symptoms Of Gonorrhoea
Gonorrhoea often has no symptoms.
In women, if symptoms do occur, they usually develop within 10 days of infection. In women, symptoms may include:
- pain, discomfort or burning sensation when passing urine
- pelvic pain, especially during sex
- irregular bleeding, especially between periods or after sex
- anal discharge and discomfort
In men, if symptoms do occur, they usually develop within 1 to 3 days. In men, symptoms may include:
- thick, yellow or white discharge from the penis
- pain, discomfort or burning sensation when passing urine
- pain in the testes
- redness around the opening of the penis
- anal discharge and discomfort
- sore, dry throat
How Soon Can I Have Sex Again
Dont have oral, vaginal or anal sex, or use sex toys, until you and your partner have both finished the treatment and any symptoms have gone. This is to help prevent you being re-infected or passing the infection on to someone else.
If youre given antibiotic treatment called azithromycin, youll still need to avoid sex for seven days after starting the treatment as thats how long it takes to work.
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How Chlamydia’s Passed On
Chlamydia is usually passed from one person to another through sexual contact.
You can get the infection if you come into contact with the semen or vaginal fluids of someone who has chlamydia.
Chlamydia is most commonly spread through:
- vaginal or anal sex without a condom
- sharing sex toys that arent washed or covered with a new condom each time theyre used.
It can be spread by giving or receiving oral sex with someone who has chlamydia. The risk can be lowered by using a condom or a dam to cover the genitals.
If infected semen or vaginal fluid comes into contact with the eye it can cause conjunctivitis (infection or irritation of the eye.
If youre pregnant its possible to pass chlamydia to the baby .
Its not clear if chlamydia can be spread by transferring infected semen or vaginal fluid to another persons genitals on the fingers or through rubbing vulvas together.
You cant get chlamydia from kissing, hugging, sharing baths or towels, swimming pools, toilet seats or from sharing cups, plates or cutlery.
How You Get Chlamydia
Due to the fact that chlamydia does not disappear on its own if left unattended, and because it might at times be asymptomatic, it is essential to comprehend how you get chlamydia so you can be checked for the disease if you are at risk.
Chlamydia is gone through sex. Complete penetration does not need to occur for the chlamydia to be passed from the penis to the vagin or vice versa.
In addition, chlamydia can be passed from the vagina to the rectum or anus when a woman wipes with toilet paper or otherwise spreads the bacteria from the vagina to the anus.
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What Happens If Chlamydia Isn`t Treated
Not all people with Chlamydia will experience any complications. If the infection gets treatment early, it won`t probably cause any long-term damages. Still, with no treatment Chlamydia will spread to other body parts. The more times you get infected with it, the more like it is for you to experience complications.
- In men this condition may lead to an infection of the testicles and maybe even infertility.
- In women this infection may lead to inflammation and pain around the liver. With proper treatment, this usually gets better in time.
- In women this medical condition may spread to other important body organs leading to PID. In turn, this may lead to long-term damages, such as ectopic pregnancy, pelvic pain, infertility and blocked fallopian tubes.
- In both man and women More rarely, this infection may lead to joint inflammation. This is also known as SARA and it`s on occasion accompanied by eye and urethral inflammation. It occurs more rarely in women than men.
Your Partner Didn’t Get Treated
If you have a consistent sexual partner, it’s important to tell them about your infection so they can get treatment, too. Once you’ve both gotten treated, you have to wait until the treatment has had time to work before you start having sex again .
Without taking these important steps, it is possible for the two of you to end up passing the STD back and forth.
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Major Symptoms Of Chlamydia And Related Complications
Medical history says that Chlamydia disease does not report any symptom so people often think about does chlamydia go away forever. Almost 80% females and 50% males stay infected without any related symptom. And in case if the symptoms start appearing, they will be observable only after 2 to 3 weeks of exposure.
Due to this trouble, sufferers are not able to receive right treatment and it leads to several issues that are more dangerous ahead. Studies reveal that almost 40% of the untreated women face pelvic inflammatory disease as the next stage of Chlamydia and this state is highly painful. The untreated female patients can face trouble in pregnancy or in some more critical cases, they can have infertility issues.
In case of males, Chlamydia generally starts from urethra and its symptoms may come or go with time. Some people can feel its symptoms during the first urination of day you can identify them as:
- Painful burning at the time of urination.
- Itching, burning, swelling, and redness around the penis openings.
- Unwanted discharge from penis that can be of yellow, grey or milky-white in color.
- Some people may face scrotal pain.
- It can also appear in form of Reiters Syndrome that is a kind of arthritis and usually cause major damage to eyes and body joints.
- Prostate inflammation issues.
- Infertility is one more dangerous issue when infection gets spread from urethra to testicles.
In case of women as well as men, the major complications due to Chlamydia Bacterium are:
When To See A Healthcare Professional
If you suspect you have chlamydia, see a healthcare professional as soon as possible. Abstain from allsexual activity until your appointment.
If you arent comfortable getting tested for STIs with your usual provider, you can find a clinic in your area.
There are many free or low-cost clinics. Heres how to find one near you.
You can also visit GetTested or call CDC Info at 800-232-4636 to find local clinics.
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What Exactly Causes Chlamydia
Chlamydia can also be transmitted to a baby during vaginal delivery if the person giving birth has an untreated chlamydia infection.
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 Do You Avoid Getting Mouth Chlamydia
How to avoid getting infected the only guaranteed way to avoid chlamydia is not having sex, but this is not a suitable options for most people. To reduce your chance of getting chlamydia you can try the following:
- Choose sexual partners carefully however difficult, you should try to discuss any previous sexual history with a new partner before you first have sex
- Get tested before the start of a new relationship and do not have unprotected sex until you know your test results and your partners an extended STI test kit which tests for chlamydia, gonorrhoea, HIV and syphilis is recommended
- Use barrier contraception such as the male condom carefully and correctly always apply the condom before any sexual contact, including oral sex
- If you are diagnosed with chlamydia, always follow the advice about treatment very carefully try to make sure, if you have had chlamydia once, you dont get it again and keep getting tested regularly
- Use condoms at the same time as other contraceptives other contraceptives dont protect against STIs and using condoms alone as a method of contraception has a high failure rate. Women are advised to use a reliable contraceptive method to avoid an unplanned pregnancy, but to use condoms as well, to reduce the chance of acquiring an STI
Who is it at a higher risk of STIs like oral chlamydia? risk factors for chlamydia include:
- Young age
- Multiple partners/frequent change of partner/overlapping partners
- Gay/bisexual men
How Is Chlamydia Spread
You can get chlamydia by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has chlamydia.
If your sex partner is male you can still get chlamydia even if he does not ejaculate .
If youve had chlamydia and were treated in the past, you can still get infected again. This can happen if you have unprotected sex with someone who has chlamydia.
What Happens If Gonorrhea Goes Untreated
Since gonorrhea often goes undetected without screening, its critical to keep up with regular checkups if you are sexually active. If left untreated, gonorrhea can cause pelvic inflammatory disease in women, which can lead to the following complications:
- Chronic pelvic and abdominal pain
- Scar tissue that blocks the fallopian tubes
Do I Need To Have A Test To Check That The Chlamydia Has Gone
If you take the treatment according to the instructions, you wont usually need a test to check the chlamydia has gone.
If youre aged under 25, you should be offered a repeat test 3 months after finishing the treatment. This is because youre at a higher risk of getting chlamydia again.
Whatever your age, you may need a repeat test or more treatment if:
- you think youve come into contact with chlamydia again
- you had sex without a condom with a partner before the treatment for both of you was finished
- you didnt complete the treatment or didnt take it according to the instructions
- the signs and symptoms dont go away
- your test was negative but you develop signs or symptoms of chlamydia
- youre pregnant.
A repeat test can be done 56 weeks after the first test.
If the chlamydia was in your rectum , you may need another test around 3 weeks after finishing the treatment. Your doctor, nurse or clinic will let you know if you need another test.
You can go back to the doctor, nurse or clinic if you have any questions or need advice on how to protect yourself from infection in the future.
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How Is Gonorrhoea Diagnosed
Testing for gonorrhoea involves taking a swab from the urethra in men and the cervix in women. It can also be tested by taking a urine sample.
Sometimes swabs are also taken from the throat and anus.
Can Gonorrhoea Be Prevented
Its very important to tell all your sexual partners from the past 3 to 6 months that you have been diagnosed with gonorrhoea. They will need to be tested and treated if infected.
Your doctor will help you decide who you need to tell and how you can tell them.
The following website can provide advice and sample emails, SMSs and letters to send either personally or anonymously: Let Them Know.
Practicing safe sex is the best way to prevent gonorrhoea infection.
It is safest to:
- always use condoms with a water-based lubricant
- always use dental dams for oral sex
- limit your sex partners or have a long-term monogamous relationship where neither of you is already infected
- avoid sex with someone infected with gonorrhoea until after they have finished treatment and are cured
- have regular check-ups
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Chlamydia Is Caused By Sexually Transmitted Bacteria
The bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis causes chlamydia infection, which usually occurs in the genital tract, so the cervix in women and the penis in men. In both women and men, the bacteria may also infect the rectum and the throat.
“Infections are spread during any kind of sexual activity: vaginal, anal, or oral intercourse,” says Jonathan Schaffir, MD, an ob-gyn at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus.
Chlamydia trachomatis can also cause conjunctivitis if the bacteria come into contact with the eyelids or the clear membrane covering the white of the eye.
Because chlamydia infections often cause no symptoms, individuals who have one may not seek medical attention or get treated for it. However, anyone who is infected with chlamydia can pass it to other people, who can, in turn, pass it to others.
Chlamydia Is Only Contagious From Person To Person
You can only get chlamydia by having intimate sexual contact with an infected person, not from casual contact, touching another persons clothing, or consuming contaminated food or water.
The chlamydia organism lives only in human cells and cannot be transmitted by external contact, such as towels or toilet seats, Schaffir says.
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What Causes Chlamydia
Its caused by bacteria called Chlamydia trachomatis.
In people with chlamydia, the bacteria are most commonly found in the cervix and urethra . The bacteria can also infect the throat and rectum .
Anyone whos sexually active can get chlamydia and pass it on. You dont need to have lots of sexual partners.
What Is An Std Anyway
Called both STDs and STIssexually transmitted infectionsare infections that are acquired through sexual contact. No, that doesn’t mean just P-in-V. Hand stuff, oral sex, kissing, and even skivvy-free bumping and grinding can put you at risk. Oh, and let’s not leave out the sharing of pleasure products such as toys .
Note: Many professionals are steering toward the new language of STI because the word “disease” means it’s a condition that “impairs normal functioning and is typically manifested by distinguishing signs and symptoms,” according to Merriam Webster. However, many of these such infections don’t have symptoms and don’t impair functioning in any way, hence the label of STI. That said, many people still know of and refer to them as STDs.
Generally speaking, STDs fall into a few main categories:
- Bacterial STDs: gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis
- Parasitic STDs: trichomoniasis
- Viral STDs: herpes, HPV, HIV, and Hepatitis B
- There’s also scabies and pubic lice, which are caused by lice and mites, respectively
Because some STDs are spread via skin-to-skin contact and others are spread through bodily fluids, transmission is possible any time fluids are swapped or skin is touched. So, if you’re wondering: “Can I get an STD without having sex?” The answer is yes.
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Essential Facts About Chlamydia
Chlamydia often causes no symptoms in the short term, but it can have serious health consequences if it goes untreated.
If youre sexually active, you should know about chlamydia, a common sexually transmitted bacterial infection. These 10 facts will bring you up to speed on whos at risk, why regular screening is so important, and how to avoid getting chlamydia and other sexually transmitted infections .