Above: Vaginal Yeast Infections And Symptoms Of Vaginal Yeast Infections. How To Prevent Vaginal Yeast Infections And Causes Of Vaginal Yeast Infections. Prevention Tips And Treatments For Vaginal Yeast Infections.
What Are Vaginal Yeast Infections?
Sorry to give you the bad news, but if you haven’t had a vaginal yeast infection yet, you will probably get one eventually. Three out of four women will experience at least one vaginal yeast infection during their life, and half of all women will have at least two or more vaginal yeast infections during their lifetime (in fact, vaginal yeast infections are so common that many women are plagued by recurrent vaginal yeast infections).
What You Need To Know About Vaginal Yeast Infections – How Do You Get Vaginal Yeast Infections?
The reason why vaginal yeast infections are so common in women, including teenagers (teenage girls), is simply because yeast normally lives on their skin and around their vagina. If you are having vaginal discharge that is white, thick, and milky, plus a really annoying itch, you probably have something known as a vaginal yeast infection or candidiasis, a common vaginal disorder caused by a yeast called Candida albicans.
A vaginal yeast infection (also called candidiasis) is a fungal infection in the vagina caused by Candida, a type of yeast. A vaginal yeast infection affects both the vagina and the vulva (the tissues at the opening of the vagina) and is caused by an overgrowth of the normal fungi that lives in the vaginal area. Most women will experience vaginal problems at some point in their life, and the three most common vaginal issues that most women will deal with are vaginal yeast infections, trichomoniasis, and bacterial vaginosis. This article mostly covers vaginal yeast infections (trichomoniasis and bacterial vaginosis are covered in different sections of our website).
Things That Every Girl Should Know About Vaginal Yeast Infections – How To Know If You Have A Vaginal Yeast Infection?
Yeast is the most common cause of vaginal infections. This type of infection is caused by a fungus and affects the vagina and the surrounding vulvar area (the vulva). Three out of four women will have at least one vaginal yeast infection during their lifetime, and symptoms include itching, burning, redness, and irritation of the vagina and vaginal area. Severe yeast infections may cause swelling of the vulva (the tissues at the opening of the vagina) and in some cases women will experience painful and/or frequent urination, caused by the inflammation of the urethral opening. A more visual sign of a possible yeast infection is a vaginal discharge that is thicker than normal, and which appears white (almost like cottage cheese).
Symptoms Of Vaginal Yeast Infections And Vaginal Yeast Infection Symptoms In Adult Women, Teens, And Teenagers (Teenage Girls)
When something disrupts the vagina’s natural balance of healthy bacteria, yeast (also known as the fungus Candida) can grow out of control, which can cause the itching and burning sensation in your vagina that will most likely ruin your week and drive you crazy and/or insane until that burning and itching of your vagina finally stops (generally after getting medical treatment).
The Possible Symptoms Of A Vaginal Yeast Infection And How To Recognize Vaginal Yeast Infections – Why Does My Vagina Itch So Much?
There are a number of symptoms you may experience if you have a vaginal yeast infection. These vaginal symptoms include:
*Painful sexual intercourse (sexual intercourse may be painful due to vaginal inflammation and dryness inside your vagina).
*Odorless vaginal discharge.
If you notice any of these vaginal symptoms, you should schedule an appointment with your gynecologist so that she may examine your vagina in order to find out if you have a vaginal yeast infection. Your doctor will be able to test you for this vaginal infection, confirm a diagnosis, and if you do have a vaginal yeast infection provide you with a prescription for an oral medication or recommend an over-the-counter vaginal cream (over-the-counter means that you can purchase your vaginal cream at your local pharmacy without needing a prescription from your doctor). It is also important to note that not every woman experiences all of these vaginal symptoms.
Vaginal Yeast Infection Symptoms And How To Recognize Vaginal Yeast Infections – Do I Have A Vaginal Yeast Infection?
Some women experience frequent vaginal yeast infections, so they are familiar with the symptoms and the course of treatment recommended for their vaginal yeast infections. However, if this is the first time that you are having what you believe are vaginal yeast infection symptoms, it is very important to see your doctor in order to get a formal diagnosis and rule out other possibilities. You don’t want to begin treating yourself when there is a chance that your vaginal symptoms could indicate something else entirely.
How Do Vaginal Yeast Infections Occur? What Causes Vaginal Yeast Infections?
There is always some yeast and bacteria in your vagina from the time that you are born and throughout your life. In fact, yeast is actually kept in check by these “good” bacteria. But when the amount of the bacteria is reduced, the yeast can grow and cause vaginal problems. Some of the things that can affect the natural bacterial balance in your vagina and cause yeast to grow include:
*Wearing tight clothes, pantyhose, and wet bathing suits.
*Possibly eating too much sugar, artificial sweeteners, and sodas (such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi which are products that we consider dangerous for you if you would like to have a beautiful and healthy body).
Like any fungus, Candida really gets going in warm, dark, moist places like the vagina, so this is why wearing clothes that trap moisture such as a pantyhose or a wet bathing suit can create the perfect conditions for developing a vaginal yeast infection.
What Causes Vaginal Itching?
The fungus candida causes a vaginal yeast infection. Your vagina naturally contains a balanced mix of yeast, including candida, and bacteria. Lactobacillus bacteria produce acid, which prevents yeast overgrowth. That balance can be disrupted and lead to a yeast infection. Too much yeast in your vagina causes vaginal itching, burning inside your vagina, and other classic signs and symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection.
Candida albicans is the most common type of fungus to cause vaginal yeast infections. Sometimes, other types of candida fungus are to blame for vaginal yeast infections. Common vaginal yeast infection treatments usually cure a Candida albicans infection, but yeast infections caused by other types of candida fungus can be more difficult to treat in the vagina, and need more aggressive medical therapies from your physician.
Treatments For Vaginal Yeast Infections
It is very important that you visit your doctor the first time that you believe that you have a vaginal yeast infection so that you may get an accurate diagnosis. After the first time (some women get recurring vaginal yeast infections) you do not have to visit your doctor again if you get a vaginal yeast infection. Instead, you can just purchase anti-fungal vaginal creams at your local pharmacy, but doctors can also give you a prescription medication if you prefer.
When treating your vaginal yeast infection, use all the medication that your doctor prescribes or the full dose of cream from the drug store, otherwise it may return. Whichever remedy you choose, avoid sex with your husband until your vaginal yeast infection disappears (otherwise your vaginal yeast infection could last longer). If the vaginal yeast infection symptoms continue after treatment or if you have abdominal pain, cramping, or fever, then it is definitely time to see your doctor again. These symptoms might be signs that you have another type of vaginal infection.
Treatments And Prevention Tips For Vaginal Yeast Infections – Vaginal Yeast Infection Treatments And How To Keep Your Vagina Healthy
Women spend tens of millions of dollars annually on over-the-counter products and many times vaginal yeast infections are not the true cause of the problem. Vaginal yeast infections are commonly misdiagnosed by women who buy one of the over-the-counter medicines which are available at local pharmacies without a prescription. Self-treatment of vaginal yeast infections should never be attempted by any woman who has never been first diagnosed for at least one vaginal yeast infection by her physician.
If a woman is able to determine that her vaginal symptoms are truly caused by yeast, she has several treatment options she may choose from, including a variety of creams which are available without a prescription at local pharmacies. Treatments with over-the-counter creams range from one to seven days. Creams available include brand names such as Monistat.
Women who prefer a less messy alternative to the creams that are sold over-the-counter without a prescription at local pharmacies may ask their physician for a prescription medication, but like many prescription medications, these could cause some side effects to your body. Remember, it is always advisable to call your physician to discuss your vaginal symptoms and ask for her recommendation regarding the type of treatment that is best for you.
How To Prevent Vaginal Yeast Infections And How To Reduce Your Risk Of Getting A Vaginal Yeast Infection
*Always wear white cotton panties. Avoid nylon and lycra as much as possible.
*Never wear pantyhose without wearing cotton panties underneath.
*Post-menopausal women and women who use oral contraceptives may find using a vaginal lubricant during sexual intercourse with their husband helpful in preventing vaginal discomfort and irritation.
*Yeast is a normal inhabitant of the intestinal tract. Because of this it is very important that you always wipe from front to back after a bowel movement in order to prevent transferring yeast to your vaginal area. In addition, great care must be taken during sexual intercourse with your husband in order to prevent vaginal infections from occurring due to contamination with organisms from the bowel or rectum.
*Avoid perfumed bath additives, as well as powders in the vaginal area. Douching is never a good idea since it washes away the natural protective mucous of the vagina and leaves women susceptible to vaginal infections.
What Causes Vaginal Yeast Infections? How Do You Get Vaginal Yeast Infections? Common Vaginal Problems You May Someday Experience
Candida albicans is a yeast-like fungus that is often found in the mouth, vagina, and intestinal tract. Candida albicans is a normal inhabitant of humans that typically does not have any adverse effects. Yeast infections are caused by an overgrowth of these normal fungi. Overgrowth of the fungus Candida is often a result of recent use of antibiotics. Yeast infections can also be caused by wearing clothing such as nylon or lycra that traps in moisture and heat in your vagina. Other possible causes include the use of oral contraceptives, and the consumption of large amounts of sugars.
If It’s Not A Vaginal Yeast Infection, What Could It Be? What Is Bacterial Vaginosis?
Bacterial vaginosis is a far more prevalent vaginal infection than yeast infections, and is characterized by a foul odor. Untreated bacterial vaginosis can result in pelvic inflammatory disease, and can lead to infertility (infertility means that you would no longer be able to have any children). Sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhea and herpes can also be mistaken for yeast infections. Thus, unless a woman is absolutely positive that her vaginal infection is yeast-related, she should seek the advice of her physician before considering self-treatment (if it turns out that you don’t have a yeast infection, self treatments can make inflammation of your vagina worse or not provide any relief at all adding to your frustration).
How To Prevent Vaginal Yeast Infections
There are a lot of things that you can do to avoid vaginal yeast infections. They include:
*Don’t wear tight pants or pantyhose all the time.
*Wear cotton underwear.
*Avoid douching, bactericidal or perfumed soaps, and feminine sprays and powders.
*Change out of sweaty underwear, workout clothes, and wet bathing suits quickly.
*Use non-deodorant pads and/or tampons (if you use tampons please read our article about Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) about the danger of using tampons).
Also, if you are sexually active, many vaginal infections can be passed back and forth between you and your husband. Only one of you may show symptoms even though both of you may be infected. If the infection persists, or if your husband has any discharge, itching, or burning, then both of you will probably need to be treated by a doctor.
How To Reduce Your Risk Of Getting Vaginal Yeast Infections And How To Avoid Vaginal Yeast Infections
Gynecologists like to call the vagina a “self-cleaning oven.” This is because your vagina doesn’t need any help with douches, scented gels, perfumes, and other “feminine” products to stay clean and healthy. In fact, rather than helping to prevent a vaginal yeast infection, these vaginal products can cause an imbalance of the healthy bacteria in your vagina which can make you more susceptible to a vaginal yeast infection.
In addition, if you use birth control pills, switching birth control pills can make you more susceptible to getting vaginal yeast infections. The reason for this is because anything that alters your hormone levels (like changing to a new hormonal birth control pill that increases your estrogen levels) or increases your stress levels (which increases the hormone levels of cortisol) is a risk factor. Other things that may increase your chances of getting vaginal yeast infections are taking antibiotics (which kill the healthy bacteria in the vagina allowing yeast to thrive) or having uncontrolled blood sugar levels if you have type 2 diabetes (high blood sugar can feed yeast and cause you to get a vaginal yeast infection).
Vaginal Yeast Infections: Tests And Diagnosis
To diagnose a vaginal yeast infection, your doctor may ask questions about your medical history. This might include gathering information about your past vaginal infections. Your doctor will also perform a pelvic exam and examine your external genitals including your vagina and your vulva (the tissues at the opening of your vagina) for signs of a vaginal yeast infection. Your doctor will also place an instrument called a speculum inside your vagina to hold the vaginal walls open in order to be able to examine your vagina and your cervix (the narrow lower end of your uterus that extends into your vagina).
Your doctor will also obtain a sample of vaginal secretions from your vagina and send a sample of vaginal fluid to the lab for testing in order to determine the type of fungus causing your vaginal yeast infection. Once the results come back from the lab, your doctor may be able to prescribe a more effective medical treatment by identifying the type of fungus causing your vaginal yeast infection.
The Truth About Wet Bathing Suits And Wet Bikinis – Tips to Prevent Vaginal Yeast Infections
You have probably heard that hanging out in wet clothes is a recipe for disaster for your vagina. Doctors often say that it is a good idea to change out of a wet bikini or sweaty exercise clothes because yeast thrives in warm, wet environments, and while that is all true, it is mostly important for women who suffer from recurrent episodes of vaginal yeast infections rather than the general population. Thus, unless you know that you are likely to get vaginal yeast infections, you won’t necessarily get one by hanging out in a wet bikini one afternoon. Thus, make changing your bikini or wet clothes a priority if you get vaginal yeast infections frequently, otherwise you will probably be fine.
Things That Every Girl Should Know About Vaginal Yeast Infections – Vaginal Diseases And Vaginal Infections
Whether you have been visited by a vaginal yeast problem once, many times, or not yet, you may be surprised by the truth about these frustrating vaginal infections that will drive you crazy (or make you go insane). The problem is that the signs are similar to other down-there vaginal problems. For example, if you have a vaginal yeast infection, you might notice burning of your vagina, itching of your vagina, pain during sex with your husband, and/or a thick white odorless discharge. But if it smells fishy, it may instead be bacterial vaginosis, and if you have only burning and pain during urination, that might suggest a urinary tract infection. Thus, the bottom line is that it can be difficult to figure out and diagnose.
Above: How To Recognize Vaginal Yeast Infections And Symptoms Of Vaginal Yeast Infections. How To Prevent Vaginal Yeast Infections And Causes Of Vaginal Yeast Infections. Prevention Tips And Treatments For Vaginal Yeast Infections.
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