Do you often get irritation, discharge, and extreme itchiness in your vagina or vulva? Then, you may be experiencing a vaginal yeast infection.
If you are wondering, vaginal yeast infection is the itching and irritation caused by a type of yeast called candida. It would be best if there is balance with candida yeast in your body. If there is an imbalance, then, you may develop an infection in your genitalia.
We know that you may be wondering if this is curable and it is! An antifungal medication is usually given to those who are experiencing a vaginal yeast infection.
Candida yeast is normally present in our skin. It is found in the mouth, throat, gut, and vagina.
Vaginal yeast infection can be brought about by changes in the vagina which can help it grow. Hormones, medication, and changes in the immune system are some of the causes why it can occur in the vagina.
Women from different age groups can get this infection. According to statistics, it is one of the most common types of vaginal infection.
There are an estimated 1.4 million cases annually. In addition, 75% of women will have at least one vaginal infection in their life.
Yeast infection treatment uses antifungal medications. These medications can help stop the growth of fungi which is the cause of the infection.
Here are some of the yeast infection medications given to patients:
Aside from the aforementioned above, there are also medications that you can use to treat vaginal yeast infections without needing a prescription from the doctor. Some of the over the counter yeast infection treatments that you can get are soothing creams and suppositories. They are convenient as you can get them directly from your local pharmacies.
Soothing creams for yeast infection can help you relieve the itchiness and swelling brought on by the infection. You can use the soothing cream by applying it to the affected area of your vagina. You just need to make sure that your hands are clean before applying the soothing cream. Some anti-itch creams for yeast infection come with an applicator so you won’t have to come in contact with the product.
Vaginal suppositories are inserted in your vagina for them to take effect. If it is your first time using a vaginal suppository, the packages of these suppositories come with instructions on how to use them. It is best if you will be inserting the suppository deep into your vagina at night before going to sleep.
Before getting tests done, we must first have an idea of the symptoms of a yeast infection. If you are experiencing any of the following, it is best to consult a doctor and get tested.
- An itchy or burning feeling in your vagina and vulva.
- A thick, white, vaginal discharge, which is similar to cottage cheese in consistency.
- There is swelling and redness in your vagina and vulva.
- Tiny cracks in the skin of your vulva because of the fragile skin in the area.
- Burning sensation every time you pee.
If you are experiencing these symptoms, you may have a vaginal yeast infection. Your doctor may do the following as an exam for the diagnosis of vaginal yeast infection.
Knowing your medical history – Your medical history will help the doctor know more about your symptoms and past information gathered to build treatment for you.
Getting a sample of vaginal discharge – Conducting this type of test is normal so you do not need to be afraid. Doing this allows the doctor to identify what type of fungus is present and it can help them provide a more accurate diagnosis and treatment plan for you.
Pelvic Exam – the doctor will examine your genitals for any signs of infection.
Most yeast infections are gone within a few days after taking medications. If it is a more severe infection, then it can take about a week.
Maybe you’re wondering if it can go away on its own. On its own, it won’t go away unless it is treated with the right medication. Make sure you take the medication as prescribed so it won’t come back.
If you have taken your medication and your condition does not improve, the doctor may do some changes in your treatment and they could include the following:
Long Course Vaginal Therapy – the doctor can increase the frequency of your medicine intake. It would start with daily for two weeks, followed by once a week for six months.
Multi-Dose Oral Medication – the doctor can prescribe you two or three doses of antifungal medication to be taken orally. If you are pregnant, this therapy is not recommended for you.
Azole Resistant Therapy – this therapy is when you become resistant to usual antifungal agents. The doctor might recommend you use boric acid, which will be inserted into your vagina. Do not take this medication orally as it is not advisable.
After taking your medication and treating your infection, the next step would be prevention. It would be nice if you can take precautionary measures to make sure that it doesn’t come back.
Just like any other infection, yeast infection can also be prevented. Here are some tips on how we can prevent it:
- Do not use scented feminine products.
- Change tampons, pads, and liners often.
- If you can, avoid wearing tight clothing such as jeans and pants. This can increase body and moisture in your genital area.
- Change wet swimsuits and workout clothes as soon as you can.
- Whenever you are using the restroom, make it a habit to wipe from the front to the back.
- Avoid hot tubs and very hot baths.
- For women with diabetes, make sure your blood sugar level is average and well maintained.
- As much as possible, wear cotton underwear
Vaginal infections can happen to all women. It is normal and common, so it is not something to be scared of. It can be cured if you are diagnosed and treated early. It is best to consult immediately if you are experiencing its symptoms.
It can also be prevented by changing your lifestyle a bit. This lifestyle change can make a difference. An example would be to avoid tight underwear if you frequently use those kinds of underwear.
Remember to also follow the instructions of your healthcare provider. In that way, the infection won’t come back and won’t be severe. In addition, do not be lax in taking your medications. If you see your symptoms getting better within 3 days but the doctor advised you to take the medicine for a week, continue your medication.
Soothing creams can also be a big help to your yeast infection. Take time in researching and choosing the right cream for you. It sounds like a lot of effort but it will always be worth it especially if it’s about your health.