Most of us are already aware of the different types of STDs or sexually transmitted diseases. However, the increase in the number of diagnosed cases still suggests the lack of knowledge in some people with regards to the basic information about the various STDs specifically in terms of prevention. Nowadays, more and more people suffer from STDs and this particular rise in number is already considered at a very alarming rate. So in order for us to reduce the spread of STDs, let us try to discuss one of the most common STDs called Chlamydia. So what is Chlamydia and how does Chlamydia spread?
Chlamydia is considered a common type of STD that is caused by a bacterium called Chlamydia trachomatis. Once transmitted, this bacterium can affect the urinary as well as the reproductive systems of the body. The word Chlamydia is termed after the name of its causative bacterium. Chlamydia can produce various types of symptoms. However, these symptoms vary depending on the gender of the infected person. If a female is said to be infected, she will usually experience symptoms such as vaginal irritation, lower abdominal pain, unusual vaginal discharges and the presence of the burning sensation upon urination. Once Chlamydia is left untreated in women, it can further complicate to serious diseases such as PID or the pelvic inflammatory disease. This disease is an overall infection of the female reproductive system that includes the vagina, the cervix, the uterus, the fallopian tubes as well as the ovaries. Nevertheless, some cases of PID do not show any signs and symptoms of the illness, but usually, this can cause lower back pain, painful urination, the presence of pain during intercourse, bleeding in between menstrual periods, vomiting, fatigue, nausea and also fever.
In case PID is ignored, the fallopian tubes can lead to scarring, which can cause other serious complications in the woman’s reproductive health such as infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and chronic pelvic pain.
On the other hand, males can also be infected with Chlamydia; however, most males are asymptomatic of the disease or are infected without producing any signs and symptoms. However, some males can also exhibit mild reactions from Chlamydia such as discharges in the tip of the penis and burning sensation while urinating. Untreated cases in males can also develop complicated problems such as epididymitis or the inflammation of the coiled tubes at the back of the testicles. This can cause inflammation and swelling of the testicles, pain and also infertility.
How is Chlamydia Transmitted?
Since Chlamydia is a type of STD, it is commonly transmitted when an individual experienced sexual intercourse with an infected person. In other words, Chlamydia is spread through sexual contact. The bacteria can be passed during vaginal, anal or even oral sex. Since most men and some women experience no symptoms with the disease, the bacterium is unknowingly being transmitted. Aside from sexual acts, infected mothers can also transmit the disease to their baby during vaginal childbirth. Babies that are born from infected mothers can experience pneumonia at a very young age as well as eye problems such as conjunctivitis.
The more sex partners a person have; the higher or the greater the risk of getting infected with this type of STD. Another common problem in dealing with Chlamydia is that it is commonly mistaken for gonorrhea (another type of STD). Both gonorrhea and Chlamydia exhibit similar types of symptoms and can also cause similar complications once left untreated. However, the two STDs require different types of treatment.
Aside from these details, teenage girls are more susceptible to having Chlamydia due to their immature cervix or opening of the uterus. This is why it is commonly transmitted to sexually active girls. Since Chlamydia is also passed through oral sex, homosexual acts or men having sex with the same gender can also acquire this disease.
Treatment for Chlamydia
Fortunately, Chlamydia can be treated with the use of certain medications or antibiotics. Some of the most common antibiotics include azithromycin and doxycycline. These antibiotics usually cure the infection. HIV positive patients with Chlamydia can also receive this medication for the treatment of the infection as well as those who are HIV negative.
In order to prevent the spread of Chlamydia, all sex partners must be evaluated, tested and treated for Chlamydia. People suffering from Chlamydia must refrain from any sexual acts in order to prevent their partners from having the problem. Because of this, urgent and immediate check up from the doctor is needed in order to treat the condition properly. Following the doctor’s order is recommended in order to gain fast recovery from the condition. Even if the symptoms are already absent, the continuous intake of medication is still needed. Sexual acts during the course of treatment must be avoided and sexual partners must also receive the Chlamydia medications as well. These are just some of the common things that we can do in order to treat and prevent Chlamydia from worsening.
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