Diseases that You Might be Carrying Without Knowing

by Justin on December 21, 2016

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The pain, the coughing, itching, sneezing, burning, and bleeding is more than we can bear. Being sick is nothing to be excited about, even if it means that you get to miss some time at work or at school. The symptoms are terrible, as well as all the other side effects like loss of appetite, less mobility, foul tasting medications and more. On the flip side though, these symptoms are what help you and your doctor identify the problem, whether it’s a viral, bacterial, fungal, or genetic. The diagnosis shapes your plan for recovery and assists the doctor in prescribing the right medication for your illness.

Imagine though, that you are sick yet you have no symptoms. It might sound great at first, but it means that the disease might be wreaking havoc in your body for a long time, destroying organs and sometimes leaving long-lasting results. Some might even be contagious and you could be spreading the illness to your friends and loved ones for days, weeks, or even years before you are properly diagnosed.

Because of their symptom-less nature, it’s worth testing yourself regularly for these diseases, especially if there is a probability that you were exposed to them at some time in the past.

  1. Chlamydia

Chlamydia is a relatively common sexually transmitted infection (STI) that often can exist in the body asymptomatically. Only 30-60% of those affected experience any kind of symptoms, while the rest of the while being able to infect others with it almost immediately. However, not treated promptly and properly, chlamydia can cause a number of complications in both men and women. Females may end up with a very painful pelvic infection, fertility issues, ectopic pregnancies or even infertility all together. Men’s symptoms include discharge from the penis, pain during urination, and can later contribute to epididymitis, prostatitis, and even fertility issues. Screening for chlamydia is recommended at least once a year, though it is best to be tested for it 3 weeks after sexual relations with a person that you do not know the health of.

  1. Hepatitis B & C

Hepatitis is a viral infection that affects your liver, inflaming it and affecting its functionality. Hepatitis A usually resolves itself without any treatment, but the remaining forms of this infection can both cause sudden illness as well as have long-term effects on the body. At the beginning of the illness, Hepatitis B and C can be difficult to diagnose as they can be asymptomatic. However, early discovery and treatment is important as the long-term effects can include liver cancer or cirrhosis. Transmission of these viruses can be through infected bodily fluids, including semen and blood. This means that in addition to suffering from Hepatitis yourself, you can spread it to your family, friends, or even strangers through poorly sterilized instruments used for dental treatment, tattoos, or even manicures and haircuts. A blood test will reveal whether or not you are infected, therefore there’s another reason to regularly have your blood checked.

  1. Prostate Cancer

Though the symptoms become clearer later on, prostate cancer is difficult to catch in the initial stages because it’s often asymptomatic. Regular screening in the at-risk population has become extremely important because of this and the fact that cancer treatment is much more effective in the early stages of the disease than once it is more developed and has the possibility of spreading. Prostate tests can be performed by your family doctor during your physical checkup.

Chlamydia, Hepatitis, and Prostate Cancer are only a few of a number of diseases and infections that can affect you without you even knowing it, at least at first. This is why regular screening and testing is important, even if you are not feeling sick. It’s essential to your own health, as well as that of those around you.

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