How long does it take to get rid of chlamydia?

It depends. If you’re diagnosed with chlamydia, your health care provider will probably prescribe an antibiotic. In some cases, treatment is possible with a single dose of medication in the health care provider’s office. Other medications must be taken for seven days. It’s important to make sure that you take the antibiotic exactly as directed for as long as it’s prescribed — even if your symptoms go away. Avoid having sex until your treatment is complete and the infection is cured. It’s also important to let your sex partner(s) know that you have chlamydia so they can get tested and treated, too. Some health care providers will give you medications to take home to your partner.

Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection that’s caused by a type of bacteria called chlamydia trachomatis. Both women and men can get it by having unprotected vaginal or anal sex with an infected partner. It can also be spread from a woman to her fetus during birth, and rarely, from the hand to the eye and, less likely, during unprotected oral sex. Each year, more than three million people of all ages become infected with chlamydia.

You can avoid getting chlamydia the same way that you reduce your risk of getting other sexually transmitted infections — by abstaining from the types of things that transmit infections, or by practicing safer sex if you’re sexually active. Condoms greatly reduce the risk of chlamydia during vaginal and anal sex. For safer oral sex, use a condom to cover the penis or a Glyde dam, cut-open condom, or plastic wrap to cover the vulva.

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