When should you get tested for chlamydia?
Until you or your partner both get tested and are sure as can be you’ve not got any STIs, you should use a condom whenever you have sex. Don’t take any excuses either, now condoms come in a variety of materials, there’s no real reason a person can’t wear one.
However good intentions often go out the window, condoms aren’t used, unprotected sex happens. If you forget our advice and don’t use a condom, at least try to remember our advice on when you should get tested. Because if you know when you really ought to get a chlamydia test, you can do one and get treated if needs be.
You’ve had unprotected sex. This one should be a no brainer. If you’ve had unprotected sex, especially if it’s with someone you don’t know all that well, you could have put yourself at risk of catching chlamydia. Even though you might want to rush out and take a test, it’s recommended that you wait two weeks after potential exposure to do one.
You’ve noticed some symptoms. Now, the symptoms of chlamydia and other STIs can all get a bit confusing. Certain symptoms could lead you to think you’ve got one STI when it’s actually another, or it could just be a symptom of another type of infection.
Chlamydia has different symptoms in men and women. In women symptoms can include pain in the lower abdomen, increased vaginal discharge, pain during sex and bleeding between periods or after sex. In men symptoms can include discharge from the penis, pain or burning when you urinate or painful swelling of the testicles.
The only way to know for sure if the symptoms you’re experiencing are due to a chlamydia infection is to get tested. In most cases an infected person won’t have any symptoms at all, so it’s not wise to wait for any warning signs.
Your partner tells you they’ve tested positive. You’ve either had the awkward phone call or had the postcard through the letterbox. Or a sensible discussion like adults would about STIs. Either way they’ve done the hard thing and let you know that you might be at risk too.
Again if you don’t think it’s quite been two weeks, it’s advised that you wait. However if you don’t want to wait to get tested you can pop to your local clinic, GP or order a postal chlamydia test online.
As well as the circumstances we’ve mentioned above, you should also get tested for chlamydia once a year and every time you change sexual partner.
Just to keep things as clear as possible, here are some instances when you can be pretty sure you won’t have caught chlamydia:
- If you sat on the same loo seat as someone who’s got chlamydia
- If you’ve shared a bed or used the same bed linen as an infected person
- By touching door knobs or household items that have been used by someone who’s got chlamydia
- By using a swimming pool, hot tub or bathtub