The Nature Of A Chlamydia Infection
Chlamydia, which is a sexually transmitted infection, is also known as a “silent” disease. It can infect both men and women and is passed on through sexual activity, whether it is vaginal, oral or anal sex. A Chlamydia infection is commonly found in young people who are anywhere between the ages of 16 and 25. Individuals can get chlamydia without knowing that they have been infected. This is what makes chlamydia sometimes difficult to treat. When complications are already present due to the chlamydia infection, it is likely that permanent damage has been done. On the other hand, chlamydia is actually easy to treat if a person is tested and diagnosed early.
So How Is A Chlamydia Infection Diagnosed?
A Chlamydia infection is normally detected with self-observation, physical examination and medical history. The physical exam will involve obtaining a sample of cervical tissue with the use of a cotton swab. This sample will then be sent to a lab for further testing. Scientists are currently attempting to develop a method that would involve only a urine test, wherein screening would be more available to the public. It is important that sexual partners (within the previous 60 days) be tested as well each time chlamydia is detected.
How A Chlamydia Infection Is Transmitted
A Chlamydia infection occurs when a person has sexual contact with another person who happens to be already infected with the disease. Chlamydia can be transmitted through vaginal, oral or anal sex. As mentioned earlier, chlamydia may cause no symptoms at all, preventing infected people from getting tested and diagnosed early. This means that those who are infected can easily pass chlamydia on to other unsuspecting sexual partners. An infected mother can also transmit chlamydia to her newborn at the time of birth (vaginal birth). Newborns of infected mothers can acquire pneumonia or eye infections, which are also known as conjunctivitis.
Since the cervix of teenage girls and young women is not fully developed, chlamydia is passed on easier in sexually active teenagers and young adults. And because it is possible for chlamydia to be passed on through oral or anal sex, men who have male sexual partners also have a high probability of contracting chlamydia.
What Is The Incubation Time After A Chlamydia Infection?
Chlamydia is the second most widespread sexually transmitted disease in the US alone. Currently, chlamydia infects up to 4 million people annually. The incubation period is usually 7 to 14 days, and occasionally longer.
What Are The Risk Factors For A Chlamydia Infection?
Risk factors for a chlamydia infection include having multiple sexual partners, unprotected sex, oral sex, anal sex, and vaginal sex. Newborns are also at risk during birth if their mother is already infected with chlamydia.
Risk factors for chlamydia infection are factors that do not appear to be a direct trigger of the disease. However, they do appear to be linked in some way. Having a risk factor for the disease raises the probability of contracting it but does not necessarily lead to chlamydia all the time. Moreover, just because you happen to not have any risk factors does not always mean you are entirely immune to chlamydia.