Causes of Trichomoniasis

A tiny one-cell protozoan named trichomona causes the Trichomoniasis infection. It is commonly called ‘trich’ and infects more than eight million Americans every year.

Vaginitis is one of the most common causes of Trichomoniasis.

Most of the time, the infection shows no symptoms. Men especially are the ones that do not know that they are already infected with Trichomoniasis.

In women, they may have the following symptoms:

  • Frequent and painful urination
  • Foul-smelling frothy discharges
  • Edema or swelling in the groin area
  • Discharges with blood spotting
  • Itching around and in the vagina

Men seldom have symptoms. If there is, they may include:

  • Frequent and painful urination
  • Discharges from the urethra

It may take 3-28 days after exposure for symptoms to develop.


Tests can be done by a medical practitioner to determine if you have Trichomoniasis even when you may or may not show symptoms.

A pelvic exam to get a vaginal discharge sample is the test that is done for women.

A swab of the urethra to get a discharge sample is the test that is done for men.

Women can help get an accurate diagnosis of Trichomoniasis:

  • Douches should not be used 24 hours before the test. The tests may give inaccurate results as the discharges are washed away by the douche.
  • A deodorant should not be used on the vulva. It will worsen the irritation and mask one of the important symptoms which are the odor of the discharges.
  • When there is an occurrence of abnormal bleeding, an appointment with the doctor is very important. Bleeding that is not connected to menstruation is a serious health problem.
  • Do not insert any object in your vagina such as a tampon or have sexual intercourse for 24-48 hours before seeing the doctor.

Trichomoniasis can be treated with prescription medicine. Your sexual partner(s) need to be informed and treated together with you to avoid reinfection.

During treatment, coming in contact with body fluids such as menstrual flow, semen, and vaginal discharges or lubrication should be avoided.

Sexual contact is the passageway for Trichomoniasis to be transmitted between partners. It is passed through the exchange of body fluids such as mutual masturbation, vaginal intercourse, and sex toys sharing.

Preventive measures for passing or getting Trichomoniasis:

  • Latex or female condoms should be used at all sexual activities particularly when engaging in anal or vaginal intercourse.
  • Abstaining or avoiding anal and vaginal intercourse.

If you are already infected with Trichomoniasis:

  • Current and other sexual partners for the last six months should be informed of the infection to get them tested and treated.
  • Abstain from engaging in any sexual activity until you have completed the treatment.
  • Make sure that your sex partner(s) is/are treated and tested before engaging in sexual intercourse in order to prevent getting infected again with Trichomoniasis.
  • Use latex or female condoms in all sexual activities particularly anal and vaginal intercourse. If you have just been cured of the infection and start to have sex again, practice safe sex always.