Getting a yeast infection is never any fun. There are things you can do to prevent getting one and things you can do to help fix it when you’ve got it.
What is a Vaginal Yeast Infection?
A yeast infection is a fungal infection called candidiasis (pronounced: can-dih-die-uh-sis). These usually occure in warm, moist parts of the body, creating an overgrowth of fungus. When it occurs in the vagina it is called vulvovaginal candidiasis.
What Causes a Vaginal Yeast Infection?
A vaginal yeast infection can be caused by many things. Stress, pregnancy, illness and certain medications, birthcontrol, steroids and antibiotics, to name a few, when your immune system is low your body can not fight off the fungus and then it is able to grow. Women with uncontrolled diabetes are more prone to this.
Some women have found they get a yeast infection right before their period due to the hormonal changes.
Anything that traps heat and moisture will also allow the fungus to grow. So tight underwear or nylong underwear will trap in heat and moisture.
Scented feminine products can also cause the fungus to flourish.
A yeast infection can happen to any woman. They are rarely spread through sex, if it does it is not an STD.
Signs and Symptoms
Some of the common signs of a yeast infection are:
- Itching or Irritation in the vulva or vaginal area
- Redness, swelling or itching of the vulva (the outer layers of skin around the vagina)
- Burning sensation or pain when having sex or urinating
- Thick white discharge from the vagina, often resembling cottage cheese (but not always). It is usally odourless but can smell like bread or yeast.
If you have any of these symptoms please see your doctor for a diagnosis. They will be able to help you get rid of it.
How do I Prevent a Vaginal Yeast Infection?
- Avoid wearing anything that will trap in heat or moisture, such as; tight jeans, nylon underwear, bathing suits, stretchy fabric (like exercise pants), and pantyhose.
- Avoid using scented products down there, such as pads, soap, lotion, body gel and laundry detergent, make sure they are fragrance free.
- Wear cotton underwear.
- Towel off well and carefully after showering/bathing.
- Don’t lounge around in a wet bathing suit.
- Do not take someone elses prescriptions, such as antibiotics.
- Add probiotics, the good bacteria into your daily diet.
How do I Get Rid of a Vaginal Yeast Infection?
There are many products on the market that you can use. However to cut out any doubt you can just see your doctor and they will prescribe the best solution for you.
There are many over the counter products available at the drug store. Be sure to follow the instructions exactly as stated and for the prescribed amount of time. Otherwise your yeast infection may not be cured and can come back and it will be harder to end in the long run.
There are pills you can take orally, vaginal creams and suppositories available. A suppository comes with a pill(s) and applicator which you use to insert the pill directly into the vagina. These methods usually take a few days to a week to cure the infection.
A vaginal cream will help relieve the itching and redness. Do not buy the cream if you are not 100% certain it is a yeast infection, if it is something else you could end up making it worse.