Understanding Chlamydia: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment
What is Chlamydia?
Chlamydia is a fairly common sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by bacteria called chlamydia trachomatis.
Though that might sound scary it can easily be treated by a single dose of antibiotics if caught early.
That's why it's important to stay informed. So, keep reading to learn more about chlamydia!
What Causes Chlamydia Infections?
Anyone who engages in unprotected sexual activity can end up contracting chlamydia.
The bacteria that causes chlamydia is spread by vaginal fluid and sperm, so you can contract the infection through vaginal sex, anal sex or even oral sex with someone who has it.
So if you're someone who has multiple sexual partners or your sexual partner is sexually active with other people, you should probably be getting tested for chlamydia frequently.
Can I pass chlamydia to my child?
Yes. The chlamydia infection can pass from the vaginal canal to your child during delivery, causing pneumonia or a serious eye infection.
Can you get chlamydia even though you've been treated before?
If you've previously been infected with chlamydia and were treated, you can still re-infect yourself if you have unprotected sex with people who have chlamydia.
Are There Other Risk Factors for Chlamydia Even If You're Not Sexually Active?
Yes. It is not necessary for penetration to occur in order to contract it. The bacteria can be spread by genital contact. You can also contract it by exchanging sex toys that haven't been washed with an infected person.
Even if infected sperm or vaginal fluid enters your eye, you can get a chlamydia infection in the eye.
How do I know if I have chlamydia?
Normally, in the beginning, chlamydia has no symptoms. It's a silent infection. As a result, you might not even have a clue that you have chlamydia.
If you do get symptoms, they may take weeks to manifest after having intercourse with an infected partner.
Symptoms of chlamydia
unusual penis or abnormal vaginal discharge
discomfort or burning sensation when urinating
one or both testicles are swelling and/or in pain
bleeding from the anus or rectal pain
lower abdomen feeling sore
experiencing painful intercourse
bleeding between periods
Symptoms of chlamydia in the throat
dry or sore throat
What Happens with an Untreated Chlamydia Infection?
Unwanted Pregnancy Issues
An unresolved infection can result in premature births.
You can also spread chlamydia to your baby if you're pregnant.
Chlamydia affects babies and they can develop pneumonia or conjunctivitis, which can lead to blindness.
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID).
PID is a life-threatening condition that demands hospitalisation. It can happen if an untreated sexually transmitted infection (STI), such as chlamydia, destroys your reproductive organs.
Infertility and chronic pelvic pain are both possible outcomes of PID. It can also result in an ectopic pregnancy, which is potentially fatal for both the foetus and the mother or gestational parent.
It can sometimes infect the tube that carries sperm and spread the infection to the testicles, resulting in testicular discomfort, swelling and tenderness. You can also develop a fever, lower back pain and experience painful sex.
Since chlamydia infections will damage your sperm, your ability to conceive will diminish.
The joints, eyes, and urethra — the tube that transports pee from your bladder to the outside of your body — are commonly affected by this disorder.
How Do I Get a Chlamydia Diagnosis?
Getting tested for chlamydia is simple and painless.
A healthcare professional will request a urine sample or a swab from an infected location, such as inside the vaginal region or the anus.
If you've had oral sex, a swab from your throat may be taken.
Who's most at risk of getting chlamydia infections?
Chlamydia causes the most serious consequences in women, much more than in men.
Nonbinary individuals and transgender males with vaginas should also be examined on a regular basis, as they are susceptible to the same chlamydia issues.
How Can I Get Chlamydia Treated?
Chlamydia can be treated with a single antibiotic dose if caught early. Azithromycin antibiotics may be given as a one-time treatment, or you may need to take Doxycyclin every day for seven days.
What if I have developed long term complications?
If you have chlamydia infection complications, including pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), you'll need to take antibiotics for a longer period of time.
However, antibiotics will not be able to reverse any irreparable harm caused by the disease.
Can I be sexually active when undergoing chlamydia treatment?
It's critical not to have sexual contact until you've completed treatment with your present sexual partner(s).
If you've had a one-day treatment option, you should wait seven days before having intercourse. Check with your doctor if its safe to have sex.
Will I feel better immediately after chlamydia treatment?
Within a week of starting antibiotics, you should feel much better. However, even if your symptoms improve, make sure you keep taking your antibiotics until they're all done.
Am I cured completely if I get chlamydia treated once?
Recurrence of infection is likely, so you should be tested again three months following therapy, and as frequent as your sexual life.
How can I prevent chlamydia infections?
Using a condom or other barrier technique during sexual intercourse is the most effective strategy for a sexually active person to try and prevent getting a chlamydia infection
Also, use lubricants (lube) that are water-based for all kinds of sex
Female condoms (also known as internal condoms) can be used for anal sex or vaginal sex.
And of course, if you've tested for chlamydia,
get a full sexual health check (which includes tests for gonorrhoea, syphilis and HIV)
In fact, even if you've never tested positive,
you should still get checked more often especially if you frequently change sexual partners.
Get Tested For Chlamydia at PTan Family Clinic!
Worried that you might have chlamydia?
PTan has STD screening services just for you!
Our tests are conducted only by our qualified professionals that are trained to ensure your comfort for the whole session.
Our tests can detect whether you have Gonorrhoea, Chlamydia, Hepatitis B and HIV via blood, urine and swab tests.
We are happy to explain abut the procedure in-depth and field any questions you may have during our session.
So what are you waiting for?