What is Chlamydia?
Chlamydia is one of the most widespread STDs with approximately 2.86 million chlamydia infections reported annually. Since it is considered a “silent” STD, meaning that its symptoms are usually mild or even nonexistent, many individuals are not aware that they have it. However, chlamydia should not left untreated, even if the symptoms are mild or nonexistent.
Effects of Untreated Chlamydia
If chlamydia is left untreated, what starts as mild or nonexistent symptoms can end up as severe long-term health risks.
In women, untreated chlamydia can result in:
- Inflammation of the cervix (cervitis)
- Inflammation of the urethra (urethritis)
- Inflammation of the uterus lining (endometritis)
- Inflammation of the vaginal opening’s glands (Bartholin glands)
- Inflammation of the uterus, ovaries, and fallopian tubes (resulting in pelvic inflammatory disease)
- Chronic pelvic pain
- Liver inflammation
In pregnant women, complications can include miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy, in where the fetus grows outside of the uterus. Many times in the case of an ectopic pregnancy, the fetus will grow within the fallopian tube, which can cause life-threatening bleeding.
In men, untreated chlamydia can result in:
- Inflammation of the tubes that hold sperm
- Inflammation of the prostate, the gland that makes most of the fluid in semen (prostatitis)
How Do I Know if I Have Chlamydia?
As previously mentioned, chlamydia can exhibit little to no symptoms that result in long-term health effects. If you do have symptoms, they usually show up several weeks after initial infection.
Some symptoms include:
- Pain during sex
- Pain or burning during urination
- Lower belly pain
- Abnormal discharge (which is usually yellowish with a strong smell)
- Abnormal bleeding, including between periods
You should not wait for the symptoms of chlamydia to show up before deciding to go for a test. It is better to catch it early and have it treated than to wait too long and have your symptoms impact your life, be it in the short or long term.
Don’t Wait for Symptoms – Get Tested Now
You should get an STD test even if you are not showing any symptoms. Many avoid getting tested because they are not exhibiting any symptoms or because their symptom overlap with/are mistaken for other existing illnesses. This can lead to spreading the STD, and if left untreated, can result in severe health risks or even death. A untreated STD can never just go away on their own – only with proper treatment. If you are unsure as to whether your symptoms are the result of an STD, please visit Symptoms for more information.
Why You Should Get Tested
Sexually transmitted diseases are one of the most overwhelming yet under-recognized health problems in the United States. Even though it is recommended to get tested every three months when you’re sexually active, the stigma surrounding STD testing makes it a sensitive subject instead of a common check-up.
Per the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, nearly 20 million new sexually transmitted infections occur every year and approximately 25% of Americans have some form of an incurable STD. To make matters worse, most STDs won’t display symptoms at first or will even display symptoms that can be mistaken for another illness, such as a yeast infection or the flu. Instead, those that are infected will remain completely unaware of their status, leading to them spreading the infection to others and not getting treatment until it is too late.
It’s no wonder that for Herpes alone, 85% of people who are infected don’t even know they have it. Chlamydia, one of the most common and curable STDs, will often not display symptoms until it is too late. As a result, 1 in 5 infected women will develop pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), resulting in reproductive issues and even infertility. Despite being the deadliest STD of all, 1 in 7 people who are infected with HIV do not realize that they are infected – their initial symptoms are usually shrugged off as the flu. Only until it is too late, when HIV turns into AIDS, do they realize that they are infected.
Long story short, not getting tested for STDs can be extremely dangerous as some STDs can have some life-threatening symptoms if they go untreated. STDs are usually stereotyped as a big joke – a mere annoyance, like an itch or burning sensation that just won’t go away. The truth is that untreated STDs can ruin more than just your physical health – it can ruin all of your life’s plans. Everything in your life can become tainted by an STD – having children, your relationships, even your life expectancy. The best cure is prevention, and the best way to prevent STDs is to get regularly checked.
At Private STD Screen, we believe in making STD testing readily accessible, striving for the utmost discretion, and delivering quick results. Our convenient checkout process makes buying a test a breeze. Just buy your test, go to a testing location near you, give your sample, and receive your results within a few days through our secure portal. No confusing paperwork, no long waits, and very discreet. Know your status today!