A Few Things Everyone Should Know About Asymptomatic STDs

A Few Things Everyone Should Know About Asymptomatic STDs

The majority of people may believe that they will know if they are infected by an STD because symptoms will be present. However this isn’t always the case. The reality is that most people will not show any symptoms of an STD and therefore may never know that they have one.

Many STDs are asymptomatic, which means a person could be infected without showing symptoms. Because of this, it is possible to be infected with an STD for a number of years, without actually knowing about it.

Below are a few things that everyone should know about asymptomatic STDs.

  1. You may not have any recognizable symptoms –  Many men and women may have infections like chlamydia with no symptoms at all. Similarly, the majority of women and a few men with gonorrhea do not even know that they are infected.
  2. Risk of infection is high – It is not necessarily true that any time you have sex with an infected person, you will get an STD. However, it does increase your likelihood of contracting a disease. It is important to use proper protection when you have sex with a stranger, as STDs can spread very fast.
  3. Screening is essential – The only way you will know if your sexual partner or you have any STDs is by getting tested before you begin a physical relationship. There are many clinics in operation, so you can search by zip code to find a place close to you to get an STD test. Even if both of you show negative test results, it will still be in your best interests to practice safe sex.
  4. Damage can be long term – STDs do not always manifest in the short term. So just because you don’t feel any symptoms now, it doesn’t mean you’ll be symptom or side effect free in a few years. In the meantime, you might also transmit the same STD to your sexual partner(s) too. If an STD goes untreated, it can become a long-term disease not only you, but for many others close to you.
  5. Incurable may not be the same as untreatable – If you have certain incurable STDs, you can still take precautions to improve health and also protect your partners. Besides practicing safer sex methods, there are few drugs available that can prevent infecting your partner. It’s important to realize that condoms are not 100% effective at preventing STDs –– since viruses can also spread from skin to skin contact in some instances.
  6. Feeling good is no guarantee that you are safe – Even if you do not have any symptoms, it is no guarantee that you are free from STDs. It is always necessary to practice safe sex, particularly if you are engaging with a stranger or multiple partners over a short period of time.
  7. Your health is always your responsibility – It is your own responsibilityto take care of your sexual health. Always practice safe sex and take all precautions to protect yourself from any kind of STD.

The thing about sexually transmitted diseases is that many people think that it is highly stigmatizing and life altering. However, that is not really true. With the advancements of medicinal science, most common STDs can actually be cured with antibiotics. Also, many other types of STDs can be managed, and their effects controlled with medication.

There is a fairly high possibility of getting infected with STDs if you are sexually active, especially if you indulge with multiple partners. Therefore it is important for you to get yourself and your partner tested regularly for these infections.

Infections like HIV and syphilis also show symptoms after a long time, but they are categorized as symptomatic. However, there are some other STDs that do not show any symptoms. They are

Human papillomavirus or HPV:

It is the type of STD that cannot be avoided, even if you are particular about using condoms while having sex. Once you get infected, you may have absolutely no clue that you are carrying it, or even if you are transmitting it to others. In some cases, HPV might show in symptoms like genital warts, but many of these HPV strains do not show any kind of symptoms.

People usually don’t get tested for HPV before they turn 30. The thing about this infection is that there are no guaranteed treatments to cure it completely. However, it is recommended for you to get it tested for it in addition to regular Pap smear tests for women.

Typically this disease does not cause any significant harm to you, but some of the strains are known for causing serious health disorders like cervical cancer. If your pap smear test shows any abnormality in the cervical cells, your doctor will recommend you to get tested for HPV.


Chlamydia is more commonly known as the silent infection, because of total absence of any kind of symptoms in most infected people. It is the kind of sexually transmitted disease which normally affects women who are below the age of 25.

In the later stages, it is possible to see certain symptoms like burning sensations in the genitals and unnatural discharge. Unfortunately, these symptoms may not occur until after the infection has entered the urinary tract.

In many cases, women may ignore or misidentify chlamydial symptoms, because the symptoms appear similar to milder issues like bacterial vaginosis or a yeast infection. If you are experiencing any kind of symptoms like burning or pain in your vagina, or if you see any kind of abnormal discharge, then you must make it a point to get the problem addressed by your gynecologist.

Although chlamydia does not show any kind of symptoms in most people, some infected people might experience symptoms like abdomen or lower back pain. They could also get untimely bleeding in between the menstruation cycle.

Even though chlamydia does not cause direct harm, it could give rise to you serious diseases like pelvic inflammatory disease, otherwise known as PID. In most cases, PID is a direct consequence of not getting chlamydia treated in a timely fashion.

As the condition progresses, chlamydia may start to spread and affect the fallopian tubes and uterus. In severe cases, it could cause infertility because of scarring and blockages caused to the fallopian tubes. As per the statistics, more than 24,000 of infertility cases every year, are caused only because of not getting the STDs diagnosed and treated on time.

Scarring of fallopian tissues in pregnant women can cause serious health threats to both the mother and the child. It may even lead to an ectopic pregnancy. Chlamydia is the kind of STD that can be transmitted from the mother the child during delivery. In most cases, children are highly prone to get pneumonia or eye infections as a result of chlamydia. Also, it increases the risk for the women to get infected by HIV if exposed.

It is highly recommended for women below the age of 25 to get screened for chlamydia at least once in a year. Even if you have a new sex partner, and if you are not sure about the sexual health of your partner, then you must make it a point to get both of you tested so that you can enjoy healthy and happy relationship, without having to worry about getting infected.

There is nothing wrong in getting tested if you have even the slightest of doubt in your mind. If the chlamydia infection is detected in the early stages, it can actually be cured completely with the help of antibiotics. Therefore, regular screening is important, so that the infection does not get an opportunity to progress to the advanced stages.


This is another asymptomatic STD that is commonly seen in women below the age of 25. That is one of the reasons why testing for gonorrhea and chlamydia is done simultaneously, even though they are different types of infections.

Although most infected women might not see any kind of visible symptoms, some of them do show milder symptoms like vaginal discharge, bleeding, and inflammation. Some women may mistake gonorrhea symptoms for those of a urinary tract infection.

It is important to test for gonorrhea and get it treated as soon as possible, because it can cause permanent damage to reproductive organs upon spreading. Pelvic inflammatory disease can also be caused if gonorrhea is not treated on time.

In addition to increasing the risk of getting infected with HIV when exposed, it can also cause serious infections to other body parts like joints, brain, heart, and blood.

If women get infected with gonorrhea during their pregnancy, then it increases the chances of miscarriage and premature birth. The baby could also face health complications like blood infection, blindness, and low body weight during birth.

Fortunately, gonorrhea can be also treated completely with the help of antibiotics, provided that it gets detected in the early stages.

Other asymptomatic STDs are Herpes and Trichomoniasis, which can be detected only with proper testing. We cannot emphasize enough on getting screened for STDs on a regular basis, at least once a year.