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Get Tested for Gonorrhoea: Prevent Spreading the Infection
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28 Jun 2023

Get Tested for Gonorrhoea: Prevent Spreading the Infection

Gonorrhoea is a common sexually transmitted infection which can spread from one person to the other at the time of anal, oral and vaginal sex. It occurs due to a bacterium which infects males and females. Generally, gonorrhoea does not show any symptoms which make it easy to infect your partner unknowingly. You need to see a healthcare provider and know if you already have the infection. It is advisable that you get tested frequently and practice safer sex to lessen the risk of further infection.

Who can get gonorrhea?

Sexually active people of any age or sex may get gonorrhea and spread it to their partners. You can pass the infection on to your baby at the time of childbirth.

You are at risk of getting this infection if you:

  • Are below 25 years
  • Have a history of sexually transmitted infections
  • Do not use dental dams or condoms each time you have intercourse
  • Have sex with one or more partners who have not tested negative for gonorrhea.
  • Are a man who have sex with another man

Causes of gonorrhea

You can get an infection when the bacteria enter your body with sexual fluids such as semen or vaginal fluid at the time of unsafe sex. The bacteria can enter the body through anus, mouth, penis or vagina. Neither you nor your partner has to ejaculate for spreading the bacteria. You may even spread gonorrhea by sharing sex toys that have not been covered with a new condom or washed. For females, the common site of infection is the cervix which seems to be opening between your uterus and vagina. In the case of males, the infection begins in the urethra, the tube where urine exits your body.

Symptoms of gonorrhoea

  • Bleeding between menstrual periods
  • Painful urination due to burning sensation in men and women
  • Swollen testicles in men
  • Yellow, green or white discharge from penis
  • Increase in vaginal discharge

If gonorrhoea bacteria have led to an infection in the rectum, you might suffer from any of these symptoms:

  • Discharge
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Itching in the anus
  • Pain at the time of bowel movements

Symptoms of oral gonorrhoea

  • Swelling in lymph nodes of your neck
  • Sore and red throat
  • Fever

If you have had unsafe sex and are facing any of these symptoms, it is important to get tested for this infection. Thankfully, it is easy to test for gonorrhoea with at-home testing kit.

How to diagnose gonorrhea

The healthcare provider will ask questions about your symptoms and past sexual history. After this, your body fluid or urine will be tested for the bacteria that cause gonorrhea.

During the appointment, your provider will:

  • Conduct a pelvic exam by taking a fluid sample from the cervix for testing.
  • Take a sample of fluid from penis for testing.
  • Take urine sample for testing.
  • Swab your rectum or throat to collect fluid for testing.

He will also discuss about the kind of gonorrhea test to perform for your health condition and the type of fluid sample the test requires.

How to get tested for gonorrhoea

You can test for gonorrhoea in different ways. Both men and women will have to conduct gonorrhoea urine test which evaluates urine sample for detecting the presence of bacteria. Oral gonorrhoea test uses swab samples from the mouth as a screening test that determines whether any detectable gonorrhoea bacteria are there. You may need to have swab samples taken from the vagina, anus or from urethra opening. This ensures a bacterial infection does not go unnoticed elsewhere in the body.

How can gonorrhoea spread?

Gonorrhoea may spread at the time of unprotected sexual contact, whether anal, oral or vaginal. There is a bacterium called Neisseria Gonorrhoea which causes an infection. People who already have the infection of Gonorrhoea bacterium do not have symptoms all the time and so, you may be exposed to it without you or your partner knowing about it.

Due to this reason, it is necessary to test for gonorrhoea and other STIs before starting a sexual relationship with new partner or if you want to conceive. If you are at risk of getting Gonorrhoea, it is advisable to test often and know whether or not you have the infection.

What happens when you do not treat gonorrhoea infection?

If you are having bacterial infection or have been exposed to it, it is a good idea to test quickly and consider talking with a healthcare provider to know more about gonorrhea screening. It is important to know your STI status in order to protect yourself and your future partner from gonorrhea infection. Untreated gonorrhea may be the reason for complications with fertility and pregnancy. The mother may pass on the infection to would-be-born baby.

How you can avoid sexually transmitted infections

You can prevent gonorrhea by using a condom or dental dam at the time of sexual activities. Safer sex is very important with gonorrhea as it usually does not lead to any symptoms.  In the case you have been exposed, visit a healthcare provider and conduct necessary tests without delay. Untreated gonorrhea may be the reason for long-term damage to your health condition. Keep in mind that this infection is common and there is nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of when speaking with the doctor. You should not experience these complications, particularly when an antibiotics course can help in treating the infection.

Visit us at STI Clinic London to schedule an appointment with the doctor when you find any symptoms like burning sensation at the time of urinating or there is pus-like discharge from your rectum, penis or vagina. Make sure you get tested for gonorrhoea in London when residing here and perform necessary treatment to prevent unnecessary complications in future.