A tiny parasite called TV or trichomonas vaginalis causes the STD or a sexually transmitted disease called Trichomoniasis.
With a month after exposure, symptoms will usually develop although more than half of women and men will not show symptoms.
Changes in vaginal discharges and itching and soreness around the vagina will be signs and symptoms that a woman has been infected with Trichomoniasis. Men infected with Trichomoniasis may experience a whitish colored thin discharge from the penis and burning pain when urinating.
The urethra, which is the tube that brings urine out of the body, and the vagina, are the body parts that are affected by Trichomoniasis. These are the other symptoms that may show:
- Pain in the lower abdominal area
- Yellow-green colored, thin or thick, frothy abnormal discharges from the vagina
- Discomfort or pain when having sex or during urination
- Unpleasant fishy smelling copious discharges from the vagina
- Itchiness, soreness, and inflammation around the vagina or itchiness in the inner thighs
While Trichomoniasis usually affects the urethra, it could also affect the prostate gland, the foreskin, and the head of the penis.
It can also show these other symptoms:
- Redness, soreness, and swelling around the foreskin and head of the penis
- Pain during ejaculation or when urinating
- White and thin discharges from the penis
- Frequent urination
Having unprotected sex can spread the parasite but it has also been known to be transmitted through sharing of objects that are ‘wet’ such as underwear, towels, and sex toys. Any sexually active adult can easily get infected with Trichomoniasis and having multiple sex partners increases the risk.
The way that the infection cannot be passed on is through anal or oral sex, sharing toilet seats, cups, plates or utensils, hugging, and kissing.
Safe sex practices it the best way to protect against infection from Trichomoniasis. This would mean that condoms should always be used in all sexual activity, using a condom to cover any sex toys that are used, and thoroughly washing the sex toys after every use.
Without treatment, Trichomoniasis will not just go away, but it can be treated successfully with antibiotics. Metronidazole is the standard antibiotic used in treating both men and women which have to be orally taken twice a day with a complete course lasting for five to seven days.
The complete course of antibiotics has to be completed even when you are starting to feel well. Abstaining from sex until the infection is cleared from the body should be done in order to prevent reinfection.
Any recent partners including your current sex partner should be informed of the infection so they could also be tested and treated.
Health complications coming from Trichomoniasis are unusual, although increased risk for other problems will affect women infected with it.
If Trichomoniasis is untreated, including other STIs or sexually transmitted infections, it will be easier for other infections to enter the body, particularly HIV.
If a pregnant woman develops Trichomoniasis, the infection can lead to premature birth or low birth weight for the baby.