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How To Know You Have Chlamydia

How Long Does It Take To Show Up In People With Penises

Who Can Get Chlamydia? How Do You Know If They’re Infected?

Theres no significant difference in the amount of time it takes for chlamydia symptoms to show up for people with penises as compared to people with vulvas.

The only major difference in the time it takes for symptoms to show up among people of various sexes may be related to how often symptoms show up.

According to the Childrens National Health System, 90 percent of people with vulvas dont ever experience any physical symptoms, while 70 percent of people with penises never notice any symptoms.

This difference in who actually experiences symptoms between these two groups may have some effect on how long it takes for symptoms show up. But theres never been any definitive link between your sex and when your symptoms appear.

How Do I Prevent Chlamydia

Using condoms every time you have sex can greatly reduce the risk of contracting chlamydia. Condoms should be used not just during ejaculation, but before any genital or sexual contact starts. If you are having oral-vaginal sex, use a dental dam to stay protected.

Ask a partner whether theyâve been tested recently for STIs before starting sexual contact. If a partner has sex with multiple people, ask about their STI status and encourage them to also get tested. Limiting the number of sexual partners you are exposed to will also decrease your risk of contracting chlamydia.

For people with female reproductive organs, a yearly gynecologic visit is recommended, even for those in a monogamous longterm relationship. People who are sexually active should always be screened for chlamydia. The screening can easily be performedâon a urine specimen, or as part of a pelvic exam.

Who Should Get Tested For Chlamydia

Because chlamydia is very common and often has no symptoms, anyone who is sexually active should think about being tested. Because chlamydia is very common among young women, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend sexually active women age 25 or younger get tested once per year. Chlamydia testing is also recommended for women with new or multiple sexual partners and pregnant women.

Anyone who is sexually active should talk with a healthcare provider about whether they need testing for chlamydia or other STIs. Dont be afraid to speak openly about your sex life, as you can get the best care by having an honest discussion with your healthcare provider.

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Practice Safer Sex By Using A Condom

When used correctly, external and internal condoms help prevent the spread of many STIs during vaginal, anal and oral sex. Condoms are less effective at protecting against STIs transmitted by skin-to-skin contact, such as herpes simplex virus, genital warts ) and syphilis .

Important things to remember when using condoms:

  • Check the condom package for damage. Do not use a damaged condom
  • Check the expiry date. Do not use a condom after its expiry date
  • Carefully open the package so that the condom does not tear. Do not use a condom that has been torn
  • Keep condoms away from sharp objects such as rings, studs or piercings
  • Store condoms at room temperature
  • Use a new condom every time you have sex. Do not reuse condoms
  • Do not use 2 condoms at once. Using 2 condoms together may result in a condom breaking
  • Use only water-based lubricants with external latex condoms. Oil-based lubricants, such as petroleum jelly, lotion or baby oil, can weaken and destroy latex
  • Water or oil-based lubricant may be used with polyurethane/nitrile condoms
  • Use only condoms made of latex or polyurethane/nitrile/polyisoprene rubbers. Latex and polyurethane condoms are the best types of condoms to use to help prevent pregnancy and STIs.
  • Avoid using condoms with spermicides containing nonoxynol-9 as it can irritate tissue and may increase the chance of getting an STI

What Does Chlamydia Look Like In The Mouth

How to recognize and treat Chlamydia trachomatis

Chlamydia in the throat may take on a similar appearance to a throat infection. The throat may simply look red and swollen.

Sometimes chlamydia in the throat will have no appearance at all, especially where no symptoms are present.

If you have been experiencing a sore throat that doesnt seem to be going away, or you have had oral sex with a partner recently who has tested positive for chlamydia, you need to get tested as soon as possible.

Chlamydia in the throat is tested using a swab. You will need to visit a medical professional in person for a diagnosis. A doctor will send a swab sample to a laboratory, which tests the specimen for the presence of DNA from the bacteria that cause chlamydia.

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Can You Get Chlamydia In Mouth

Can you get chlamydia in your mouth?

Though it is less common to get chlamydia in your mouth and throat, it is possible.

Chlamydia may be transmitted when someone performs oral sex on someone who has genital chlamydia It is also possible for someone who has chlamydia in the throat to give it to another person via oral sex.

Chlamydia is most commonly spread through unprotected anal, vaginal and/or oral sex.

Its also important to note that contact with chlamydia bacteria from one location to another can lead to the transmission. For example, it would be possible to get anal chlamydia if a person living with vaginal or penile chlamydia used toilet paper in an infected area and then later wiped a non-infected area.

Oral sex is a less common route of transmission, or in other words, chlamydia is less likely to be transmitted during oral sex. The bacteria associated with chlamydia generally targets warm and moist environments such as the genitals. Chlamydia bacteria is more likely to thrive in the genital areas.

Read: What are the symptoms of chlamydia?

What Is The Treatment For Chlamydia

Since its a bacterial infection, chlamydia is treated with oral antibiotics. Depending on the severity of the infection, youll need to take your prescription for 5 to 10 days. Be sure to finish the entire prescription. Just because your symptoms improve, doesnt mean the infection has fully cleared.

Youll also need to avoid all sexual activity during the course of your treatment until the infection clears up. This will reduce the risk of reinfection or transmitting the infection.

Due to the prevalence of chlamydia, its important to get annual tests if you:

  • are under the age of 25 and are also sexually active, especially if youre female
  • have sex with multiple partners
  • have a history of STIs, or are treating another type of STI
  • dont use condoms regularly
  • are male and you have sex with other men
  • have a partner who has told you theyve recently tested positive for chlamydia

You may need to get tested more often than once a year.

If youre pregnant, youll need to get a chlamydia test during your first prenatal appointment. Your gynecologist or midwife may also recommend another test later in your pregnancy if you have any of the above risk factors.

Chlamydia can cause complications in pregnant women, but also lead to problems at birth, such as pneumonia and eye infections.

After youve had chlamydia, you should get retested

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How Can Chlamydia Be Prevented

Latex male condoms, when used consistently and correctly, can reduce the risk of getting or giving chlamydia.53 The surest way to avoid chlamydia is to abstain from vaginal, anal, and oral sex, or to be in a long-term mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who has been tested and is known to be uninfected.

What Happens If You Dont Wait 7 Days After Treatment For Chlamydia

What You Need to Know About Chlamydia

The treatment wont work if someone is re-exposed to chlamydia or gonorrhea in those 7 days. If you cant avoid having sex for 7 days, then using a condom will help lower the chance of passing the STI to your partners, but there is no guarantee.

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How Often Should I Get Checked For Chlamydia

Sexual health check-ups are recommended for anyone who is sexually active. Frequency of testing also depends on your STI risk:

  • An annual sexual health check-up is highly recommended if you are sexually active especially if you are under 25.
  • Get checked more often during the year if you frequently change sexual partners.
  • Remember, you are at greater risk if you have sex without a condom with 1 or multiple sexual partners.

Should I Be Scared Of Getting A Chlamydia Test

Theres no reason to be afraid of getting a Chlamydia test because the procedure is straightforward, painless, and generally reliable. If your test results are positive, dont be panicked this is a simple infection that can easily be cured with chlamydia treatment medication. The most essential thing to remember is to seek treatment as soon as possible. If left untreated, it can lead to major health problems such as infertility and reactive arthritis, which affects your joints.

Chlamydia can spread to the testicles and epididymis in males, producing pain and swelling. Epididymitis or epididymo-orchitis is the medical term for this condition .

You should get tested for Chlamydia if:

  • If you have never gotten tested before.
  • If youve had sexual contact with someone else since the last time you tested.
  • If its been more than a year since youve tested for Chlamydia or gonorrhoea.
  • If you havent used a condom and/or had any risky sexual activity.
  • In the event that a condom splits.
  • If youre pregnant.
  • Infections can be discovered two weeks following sexual activity with any new sexual partner.
  • At the very least, once a year.

Youll have a lower risk of acquiring major Chlamydia issues if you get diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. With Halloween approaching, its a good idea to have a sexual health checkup because many individuals will be attending parties/bars and potentially meeting a new sexual partner.

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Chlamydia In The Rectum Throat Or Eyes

Chlamydia can also infect:

  • the rectum if you have unprotected anal sex this can cause discomfort and discharge from your rectum
  • the throat if you have unprotected oral sex this is uncommon and usually causes no symptoms
  • the eyes if they come into contact with infected semen or vaginal fluid this can cause eye redness, pain and discharge

How Long Can You Have Chlamydia Before It Causes Damage

How to recognize and treat Chlamydia trachomatis

Symptoms usually appear within one to three weeks after being infected and may be very mild. If not treated, chlamydia can lead to damage to the reproductive system. In women, chlamydial infection can spread to the uterus or fallopian tubes and cause pelvic inflammatory disease , according to the CDC.

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Can You Tell How Long Youve Had Chlamydia

Is it possible to tell how long I ve had chlamydia? Not usually, because chlamydia often doesnt cause any symptoms. This means you can have the infection without knowing you could have had it for months or even years. Depending on how many people you ve had sex with, it can be hard to trace it to one person.

Antibiotics Are A Highly Effective Cure For Chlamydia Infection

Antibiotics prescribed for chlamydia include:

A single oral dose of Zithromax is the most common treatment. Other drugs may be given in varying doses for a period of up to a week. Most cases of chlamydia clear up within a week after you start on antibiotics.

If you think you have been exposed to chlamydia, Stoner says, see your healthcare provider to receive antibiotic medication to prevent the onset of infection.

The partners of individuals diagnosed with chlamydia will need treatment, too, and in some states they can get it without a doctor visit through a practice called expedited partner therapy, in which the first person treated delivers the treatment to their partner or partners.

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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.

Where Can I Get More Information

Chlamydia – Everything You Need To Know

Health care providers with STD consultation requests can contact the STD Clinical Consultation Network . This service is provided by the National Network of STD Clinical Prevention Training Centers and operates five days a week. STDCCN is convenient, simple, and free to health care providers and clinicians. More information is available at www.stdccn.orgexternal icon.

Division of STD Prevention Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-38271-800-783-987

References

1. OFarrell N, Morison L, Moodley P, et al. Genital ulcers and concomitant complaints in men attending a sexually transmitted infections clinic: implications for sexually transmitted infections management. Sexually transmitted diseases 2008 35:545-9.

2. White JA. Manifestations and management of lymphogranuloma venereum. Current opinion in infectious diseases 2009 22:57-66.

3. Kreisel KM, Spicknall IH, Gargano JW, Lewis FM, Lewis RM, Markowitz LE, Roberts H, Satcher Johnson A, Song R, St. Cyr SB, Weston EJ, Torrone EA, Weinstock HS. Sexually transmitted infections among US women and men: Prevalence and incidence estimates, 2018. Sex Transm Dis 2021 in press.

4. CDC. Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance, 2019. Atlanta, GA: Department of Health and Human Services April 2021.

5. Torrone E, Papp J, Weinstock H. Prevalence of Chlamydia trachomatis Genital Infection Among Persons Aged 1439 Years United States, 20072012. MMWR 2014 63:834-8.

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Can Chlamydia Be Prevented

The only sure way to prevent chlamydia is to not have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.

Correct usage of latex condoms greatly reduces, but does not eliminate, the risk of catching or spreading chlamydia. If your or your partner is allergic to latex, you can use polyurethane condoms.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

How Do You Get Chlamydia

Chlamydia is usually passed on through unprotected vaginal, anal or oral sex.

Chlamydia can be passed on through genital contact. This means you can get chlamydia from someone who has the infection if your genitals touch, even if you dont have sex or ejaculate .

You can also get chlamydia if you come into contact with infected semen or vaginal fluid, or get them in your eye.

Chlamydia cant be passed on through kissing, hugging, sharing towels or using the same toilet as someone with the infection.

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Top Things To Know About Chlamydia:

  • Chlamydia is often asymptomatic, meaning that many people donât know they have it
  • Chlamydia symptoms can include pus-like yellow discharge frequent or painful urination spotting between periods or after sex and/or rectal pain, bleeding, or discharge
  • Untreated, it can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, chronic pelvic pain, ectopic pregnancy, and/or infertility in women and people with female reproductive tracts
  • Antibiotics are used to treat chlamydia infections

Where Can I Get A Test

Chlamydia

There are a number of services you can go to. Choose the one you feel most comfortable with.

A chlamydia test can be done at:

  • a genitourinary medicine or sexual health clinic
  • your general practice
  • contraception and young peoples clinics
  • some pharmacies.

Abortion clinics, antenatal services and some gynaecology services may also offer a chlamydia test.

In England, if youre a woman aged under 25 years old, you may be offered a chlamydia test as part of the National Chlamydia Screening Programme when you visit some service for other reasons, for example at a pharmacy or your GP.

The NCSP aims to identify people without symptoms to reduce the complications of untreated infection. If chlamydia is not treated, it can cause health complications, especially in women. Untreated chlamydia in women can cause pain in the pelvis, ectopic pregnancy and infertility .

If you are a woman aged under 25 years old and you are offered a chlamydia test as part of the NCSP you should consider taking it.

In many areas, free home self-sampling tests for chlamydia are available to order online. This is where you take your own sample and send it to be tested. See www.nhs.uk

Its also possible to buy a chlamydia test to do at home. The accuracy of these tests varies. Some types are very accurate when carried out according to the instructions, others can be less reliable. If you buy a testing kit make sure you get advice from a pharmacist or your doctor.

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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.

When To See A Doctor

If a person has symptoms of chlamydia after testing and treatment or thinks that they have come into contact with chlamydia again, they should see their doctor.

Females are less likely than males to have symptoms of chlamydia, so testing is especially important for them.

The recommend chlamydia testing every year for the following groups of people:

  • sexually active females under the age of 25 years
  • females over the age of 25 years who have new or multiple sexual partners
  • anyone with a sexual partner who has an STI
  • sexually active gay and bisexual males

Pregnant women should have a chlamydia test early on in their pregnancy.

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