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Getting tested is the only way to know if you have chlamydia. People who have sex should get tested regularly. Chlamydia tests are generally quick, painless, and sometimes free.

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How do I know if I have chlamydia?

You can’t tell if you have chlamydia just by the way you feel. The only way to know for sure if you have chlamydia is to get tested — whether or not you have symptoms.

If you’re showing any signs of chlamydia, you should get tested. Testing is also a good idea if you’ve had unprotected sex or if a partner has chlamydia (even if you don’t notice symptoms). In general, people who are sexually active should get tested for STDs, including chlamydia, about once a year. If you’re pregnant, get tested for chlamydia at your first prenatal visit. 

Chlamydia testing is pretty easy and painless. The best part about getting tested for STDs? Once you get it over with, it can really put your mind at ease. And if you DO have chlamydia, it’s best to know right away so you can take medicine and get better as soon as possible.

What happens during a chlamydia test?

Chlamydia testing can be as simple as peeing in a cup. Sometimes the test is done by gently rubbing your genitals with a cotton swab, to take cell samples from your urethra, vagina, cervix, or anus. The samples are tested for chlamydia bacteria. Your doctor may also be able to see chlamydia symptoms, like discharge on your cervix, during an exam.

Chlamydia can look like other common STDs like gonorrhea, so your nurse or doctor might test for a few infections.

The idea of getting tested may seem scary, but try not to freak out. STD testing is a regular part of being a responsible person and taking care of your health. The good news is chlamydia is totally curable with medication — so the sooner you know you have it, the faster you can get rid of it.

Where can I get tested for chlamydia?

You can get tested for chlamydia and other STDs at your doctor’s office, a community health clinic, the health department, or your nearest Planned Parenthood health center. In some states, you can do an online visit and take a chlamydia test at home.

STD testing isn’t always part of your regular checkup or gynecologist exam — you have to ask for it. Be open and honest with your nurse or doctor so they can help you figure out which tests you may need. Don’t be embarrassed: Your doctor is there to help, not to judge.

More questions from patients:

How long should I wait after having sex to get tested for chlamydia?

If you’re showing any signs of chlamydia, get tested right away. However, chlamydia doesn’t usually cause any symptoms, so you may have the infection and not know it. 

If you had unprotected sex, make an appointment with your nurse or doctor, like the staff at your local Planned Parenthood health center as soon as possible. That can be right after you have sex. And if you do have chlamydia, get tested again about 3 months after your treatment to make sure you cleared the infection and didn’t get it again.

 It’s a good idea to get tested for STDs regularly, including chlamydia. Ask your doctor or nurse how often you should get tested. Learn more about getting tested for chlamydia.

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