Of all sexually transmitted infections, Chlamydia is one of the most common. The infection is caused by a bacteria called Chlamydia Trachomatis and anyone who is sexually active runs the risk of contracting it.
This bacteria can live in many places in the body including the urethra, rectum, vagina, cervix and uterus. Less commonly, it can flourish in both the throat and eyes and if left untreated, can cause serious and painful health complications.
Chlamydia testing is performed privately by a doctor or nurse and requires a swab of either the vagina, urethra, or rectum. In some cases, where the doctor suspects conjunctivitis (an eye infection caused by Chlamydia Trachomatis), you will be required to provide a swab of the resultant discharge.
Chlamydia is primarily spread through exposure to bodily fluids. The following are ways the infection can spread from person to person:
- Unprotected vaginal or anal sex - Bacteria is transferred via semen and vaginal fluid. Using a condom can help protect from this
- Oral sex - Bacteria can be spread by giving or receiving oral sex. Using a condom or dam can help protect from this.
- Sex toys - Sharing sex toys that haven’t been properly sanitized can spread the bacteria from person to person.
- Birth - Chlamydia can be passed from mother to child during birth and possibly during pregnancy. It is associated with womb infections following pregnancy and premature birth.
Chlamydia cannot be transmitted by kissing or bodily contact such as hugging. It also cannot be transferred by swimming pools, eating utensils or sharing towels with an infected person.
If you suspect you have been infected with chlamydia, it is imperative that you seek out Chlamydia testing as soon as possible. If left untreated, a Chlamydia infection can cause pelvic inflammatory disease, liver inflammation, blocked fallopian tubes, testicle infection, pelvic pain and possible infertility. Testing is necessary if you have been exposed to someone with the infection, or any of the following systems occur:
- - Bleeding after sex
- - Bleeding between periods
- - You have another STI
- - Inflamed cervical cells or discharge discovered during an exam
- - Symptoms of conjunctivitis
If, after testing, you find you have indeed been infected with chlamydia, your will be prescribed antibiotics for chlamydia treatment. You should not engage in any sexual activity during the course of your chlamydia treatment and for seven days after you have completed your prescription.
If you discover that you are infected with chlamydia, it is critical to tell your partner so they may undergo testing as well. If treated early, it is unlikely that a chlamydia infection will cause serious complications, making early chlamydia testing and chlamydia treatment absolutely paramount to your health.
If you suspect for any reason that you have been infected with chlamydia, please do not hesitate to act. If you are searching for a clinic that performs testing, contact us immediately to get a free STD test for Chlamydia.