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Chlamydia (cont.)

Prevention

You can reduce your risk of becoming infected with chlamydia or another sexually transmitted infection (STI) and spreading the disease.

Practice safe sex

Preventing an STI is easier than treating an infection after it occurs.

  • Talk with your partner about STIs before beginning a sexual relationship. Find out whether he or she is at risk for an STI. Remember that it is possible to be infected with an STI and not know it. HIV, for example, may not be found in the blood for up to 6 months after initial infection.
  • Be careful.
    • Avoid sexual contact if you have symptoms of an STI or are being treated for an STI.
    • Avoid sexual contact with anyone who has symptoms of an STI or who may have been exposed to an STI.
  • Do not have more than one sex partner at a time. Your risk for an STI increases if you have more than one sex partner.

For more information, see the topic Safe Sex.

Male condom use

Condoms reduce the risk of becoming infected with an STI. A condom must be put on before any sexual contact begins. Use condoms with a new partner until you are certain he or she does not have an STI.

Female condom use

Even if you are using another birth control method, you may want to use condoms to reduce your risk of getting an STI. Female condoms are available for women whose partners do not have or will not use a male condom.

Home Treatment

There is no home treatment for chlamydia. Antibiotics, taken exactly as prescribed, normally cure chlamydia infections. Chlamydia does not cause long-term problems if it is treated before complications develop. Untreated chlamydia can lead to many complications.

Finding out that you have chlamydia may cause you to have negative thoughts or feelings about yourself or about sex. You may feel embarrassed, be angry at the person who infected you, or feel frustrated with treatment. You may want to seek counseling or join a support group for people who have sexually transmitted infections (STIs). You may get counseling from a psychologist, a social worker, or another counselor. STI health clinics may offer counseling and support groups.

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