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In recognition of STD Awareness Month many experts are urging individuals, particularly young people, to seek STD testing to know find out whether or not they have a sexually transmitted disease.
Testing is important because some diseases can present no symptoms for a long time after infection. This means that individuals can spread infections, such as Chlamydia , for years without ever knowing that they were carrying the disease.
"Some figures say that up to 80 percent of women who have Chlamydia infection have no symptoms or don’t realize they're having symptoms," Melissa Graven, of the McLean County, Illinois Health Department, told news station WJBC.
Despite the fact that the disease may present no symptoms, it can still cause significant damage to a person. Infertility is the most common complication that results from infection. The disease can also cause inflammation of the urinary tract, which may be painful.
While rates of infection are high among all age groups, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that they are highest among young people between the ages of 15 and 24, and recommends that individuals in this group seek STD testing.
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