Gonorrhea: Symptoms and Treatments
Gonorrhea is one of the most common sexually transmitted disease that affects both men and women in different ways. And nearly 90 million new cases of gonorrhea occur every year. Also known as “the clap”, gonorrhea has been around for hundreds of years, and is transmitted by a bacteria.
Gonorrhea is caused by a bacteria called Neisseria Gonorrhoeae. It affects the reproductive tract, eyes, mouth, throat and rectum. Therefore, any sexual contact via the mouth, penis, vagina, or anus with a gonorrhea infected person can lead to a transmission of the disease. It can also be transferred from an infected mother to her child during delivery. The bacteria can continue to inflame the sexual organs and lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, or more serious inflammatory infections throughout the body. Also, when left untreated, the bacterium can easily spread to other sexual partners. A point to note here is that you don’t need to have multiple sex partners to acquire the bacteria responsible for gonorrhea.
Gonorrhea has different symptoms in men, women and children. While the symptoms of gonorrhea are not that extreme (burning sensation when urinating for men, and pelvic pain and vaginal discharge for roughly 50% of female patients), if the condition is left untreated, it can become more serious. These symptoms are fairly common and therefore difficult to identify. So, below is a list that you can refer to check for the symptoms.
- Burning, itching and irritation in the vagina and cervix
- Urge to urinate often
- Thick yellow or green discharge from the vagina
- Spotting between periods
- Burning and irritation while urination
- Swelling and pain in the prostate gland
- Thick and yellow discharge from the penis
- Irritation in the mucous membranes of the eyes (can also lead to blindness)
Oral or Rectal Gonorrhea symptoms:
- Sore throat
- Rectal pain
- Rectal discharge
The problem with the treatment is that many gonorrhea strains have adapted to existing antibiotics, leaving them less effective. New treatment approaches certainly exist, and gonorrhea can be treated, unlike some other “permanent” STIs. For the medical treatment of gonorrhea, you will be put on a dual drug regimen. This includes penicillin shots and oral intake of antibiotics. Ceftriaxone or Cefiximeare the antibiotics given as shots and azithromycin is the tablet that is orally given for the treatment. These medicines also help treat Chlamydia infection and can be availed from any sexual health clinic.
However, for those who do not respond well to the medication, or who prefer to take a natural approach to remedying this ailment, many natural, homeopathic, dietary, and behavioral remedies also exist. Even so, gonorrhea can be quite serious, so medical help should always be sought or consulted, particularly if the symptoms are severe.
Some of the most important home remedies for gonorrhea include the use of garlic, zinc, vitamin C, vitamin K, amino acids, apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil, yogurt, aloe Vera, exercise, mangosteen, and echinacea.
Zinc: One of the best ways to boost the immune system and keep your body running on a healthy course is zinc. This essential mineral can increase the number of antibodies and white blood cells, while also directly affecting the bacterial infection of gonorrhea. You can find zinc in a diverse number of mineral-heavy foods, including dark chocolate, oysters, and sesame seeds.
Garlic: Garlic, and its important active ingredient, allicin, is another popular home remedy for gonorrhea. This is one of the most easily accessible and popular antibacterial foods that you can add to your diet, and it also happens to be versatile in culinary preparations. You can significantly boost the strength of your immune system and treat gonorrhea effectively by either consuming garlic normally or treating yourself with garlic extract, or even garlic in supplemental form!
Vitamin C: You’ve likely heard that vitamin C is one of the best ways to improve the health of the immune system, and when it comes to gonorrhea, anything that can improve your resistance to bacterial infections is a good thing. High concentrations of vitamin C can be found in various fruits and vegetables, particularly spinach, broccoli, and citrus fruits. Vitamin C, commonly known as ascorbic acid, also acts as an antioxidant and can help to reduce the inflammation and discomfort caused by the condition.
Apple Cider Vinegar: This versatile health tonic, particularly the vinegar part of the mixture, is a potent antimicrobial and antibacterial substance, so it can be used to directly treat gonorrhea. Whether consumed internally or even applied topically (apple cider vinegar in a bath or on a tampon), this substance can quickly eliminate the bacterial infection and prevent it from spreading. It can also help with reducing inflammation and pain.
Aloe Vera: Aloe vera is used for many different purposes, and there are many different species of this beneficial herb. One particular species, Barbadensismilla, should be used for gonorrhea, as others can actually cause illness or worsen the infection. Since gonorrhea has become resistant to many drugs, herbal remedies like aloe vera are often prescribed as complementary or alternative options, and aloe vera has shown remarkable success in removing bacterial infections and lowering inflammation.
Tea Tree Oil: Similar to apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil can be placed directly on a tampon to directly attack the bacteria for females suffering from gonorrhea. Tea tree oil has been proven to be a powerful antibacterial substance that can effectively neutralize the gonorrhea bacteria, while also providing a variety of other benefits to the body.
Avoid Sexual Intercourse: When suffering from gonorrhea, the inflammation and pain can make sex quite unpleasant, and can even worsen the condition. Furthermore, if you are with a new partner, you risk spreading the disease to them, and if you and your partner are both suffering from the condition, you are perpetuating the illness and making it more difficult for both of your bodies to handle and cure the condition.
Exercise: Keeping active and fit is a good way for your body’s immune system to also get a workout. By promoting blood flow, repair, and a high metabolism, exercise should be able to boost your immune system to more effectively eliminate bacterial infections like gonorrhea.
Mangosteen: This popular tropical fruit, with the scientific name of Garciniamangostana, has been used to treat gonorrhea for generations. The high concentration of vitamin C and large variety of antioxidants make this fruit a powerful dietary defender against all bacterial infections, and can quickly cure you of gonorrhea if consumed regularly, and combined with other alternative or formal gonorrhea treatments.
Echinacea: There are dozens of applications for echinacea, thanks to its impressive antibacterial and immune-boosting properties. Echinacea is also readily available at most grocery stores and health food shops. There are dozens of research studies supporting the antibacterial properties of this herb, and it has been shown to not only control the symptoms of gonorrhea, but also eliminate the root bacteria and protect the body from further infection.
Although the symptoms are not always severe, and the formal treatment is not always effective (antibiotic resistant strains of gonorrhea), it is important to consult a doctor before embarking on any alternative or herbal remedy treatments for a sexually transmitted disease. The above remedies are suggestions for complementary treatments and home-based strategies, but should not fully replace antibiotic treatment, or at least medical consultation.
There are a few basic precautions that you can take to prevent gonorrhea or any other sexually transmitted diease:
- Practice safer sex;
- Have one sexual partner at a time;
- Use condoms;
Lastly, it is very important that you talk about STI’s with your sexual partners, so that better precautions can be taken. It is also essential to spread awareness about gonorrhea and other such diseases to prevent them from spreading.