You may have heard of chlamydia and may be asking what is chlamydia? Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection. Both men and women can get chlamydia. Like most STDs, chlamydia is treatable, but it can damage a woman’s reproductive system permanently, making it difficult or impossible to have a baby.
Chlamydia can cause preterm labor in pregnant women and it can be transmitted to a baby during delivery. When Chlamydia is transmitted to a baby during delivery, it can cause eye infections or pneumonia. This is one reason why it is important to see a health care provider early if you are pregnant. If you are pregnant and have an STD, your health care provider can treat the condition early and reduce the risk of infecting your baby during delivery.
Who Can Get Chlamydia?
If you are sexually active, you can get Chlamydia. Young, sexually active persons whether gay or straight and who are not in a monogamous relationship are at higher risk for getting chlamydia.
What are the Symptoms of Chlamydia?
Chlamydia is one of those infections that can persist without symptoms. In fact, a person with chlamydia may not have any symptoms or the symptoms may not show up for several weeks after he or she has had sex with an infected partner. Women have symptoms may experience burning during urination and vaginal discharge. Men may have the following symptoms–pain and swelling in the testicles, burning when urinating and discharge from the penis.
Chlamydia can also infect the rectum as a result of anal sex and can cause bleeding, discharge and rectal pain.
Can Chlamydia Be Cured?
Yes, chlamydia can be cured. You and your sex partners should be seen by a health care provider who will diagnose the condition and prescribe medication to treat the infection. Your doctor may prescribe a single dose or a seven-day regimen. Regardless of what he or she prescribes, you should abstain from sex for at least seven days. You must take all of the medication. If you have unprotected sex, you could get chlamydia again.
What happens if Chlamydia is left untreated
If you are a woman, the longer you allow chlamydia to go untreated, the more likely you are to develop Pelvic Inflammatory Disease or PID. Sometimes PID has no symptoms, but it can cause pain and damage to the reproductive system. Men with untreated chlamydia may experience pain and infection, but chlamydia usually does not impact a man’s ability to have children.