Do you have a problem with vaginal yeast infections? Dealing with a vaginal yeast infection can sometimes be quite difficult and it seems that once we have one yeast infection, another one is soon to follow. Let’s take a look at why people have recurring yeast infections and what can be done in order to overcome the problem that is plaguing us. Here are the answers to frequently asked questions about yeast infections. This can help you ward off the problem once and for all.
Vaginal Yeast Infection FAQ
1# What is a yeast infection?
A vaginal yeast infection is an infection of the vagina caused by an overgrowth of the yeast fungus. A vaginal yeast infection is characterized by unusual vaginal discharge, soreness, itching and burning of the vulva and the area around the vagina.
2# What causes a yeast infection?
Yeast infection is caused by a fungus that is a close cousin of mushrooms, toadstools, truffles and puffballs. The most common type is Candida Albicans. Normally, yeast are always present in the vagina but in small numbers. When natural acidity (pH balance) of the vagina changes, symptoms of a yeast infections may appear.
3# What are the symptoms of vaginal yeast infection?
- A discharge that can range in color and consistency from being thin and colorless to white or yellow and lumpy with the consistency of ricotta cheese.
- Swollen or inflamed vaginal area and vulva, with a clearly defined infected area.
- Itching in the vagina and surrounding area.
- Pain both during and following sexual intercourse.
- Urination that is both painful and far more regular than usual.
4# What is candidiasis?
Yeast infections that occur as a result of Candida albicans are generally referred to by the group name Candidiasis and can take many different forms.
5# Can a yeast infection cause bleeding?
Light vaginal bleeding may be noted, especially if the skin of the infected areas becomes broken.
6# How to test for yeast infection?
The only reliable way to test for vaginal yeast infection is by identification of the yeast in the sample of the discharge from the vagina or a scraped specimen from the vaginal area. A lab technician will look at the sample under a microscope to see whether there is an overgrowth of the yeast fungus in the vagina.
7# How do you get a yeast infection?
Vaginal yeast infection may appear in certain circumstances such as hormonal imbalance and changes of the pH level in the vagina. Pregnant women and those who suffer from diabetes are more prone to infections. Long-term use of broad-spectrum antibiotics and use of corticosteroid medicines can also cause a yeast infections. The habit of douching, wearing tight, poorly ventilated clothing and underwear also can contribute to yeast infections.
8# Are yeast infections contagious?
A yeast infection is not considered an STI. But if you have unprotected sex there is a low level of risk if your partner is a man. About 15% of men get an itchy rash on the penis if they have unprotected sex with a woman who has a yeast infection. If your partner is a woman, she may be at a higher risk. In both cases your partner should be tested and treated if he/she notice any symptoms.
9# What does a yeast infection feel like?
Generally, the infected area will be itchy or painful, and while this infected area is likely to be angry, raised and red, the edges of it are likely to be very easily demarcated from the surrounding skin.
10# Does a yeast infection smell?
Sometimes discharge might have an odor similar to that of the yeast that is used for baking bread, whilst at other times, it will be completely odorless.
11# Why do i keep getting yeast infections?
Many women have a chronic yeast infection problem which never seems to fully go away. After you have suffered yeast infection once, it becomes considerably more likely that you will do so again, particularly if you treat the condition on a peripheral level, rather than attacking the root cause of your yeast infection. Because the kind of over-the-counter treatments that people commonly use do not have the ability to penetrate deeply enough under the skin to eradicate the root cause of the yeast infection problem, it is almost inevitable that the problem will return again, and probably do so sooner rather than later.
12# Can a yeast infection go away on its own?
If you have mild symptoms, vaginal yeast infection may go away without treatment. However, you should see your doctor to confirm your diagnose, especially if you are pregnant. The symptoms of a yeast infection are a lot like symptoms of a bacterial vaginosis and other more serious STIs. If left untreated, risk of getting other STIs increases, which can lead to problems getting pregnant. Bacterial vaginosis can also lead to problems during pregnancy, such as premature delivery.
13# Can antibiotics cause yeast infections?
Yes. Taking antibiotics is one of the most common causes of a vaginal yeast infection. If you have previously been taking a broad spectrum antibiotic for any other medical condition, your natural immune system is now slightly weaker than it was previously, and you are therefore more likely to contract a yeast infection. If you take antibiotics to treat your vaginitis, they will kill all bacteria indiscriminately. This includes the good bacteria that will normally keep Candida albicans in check. Antibiotics can also change vagina’s acidity level (pH balance), allowing yeast to overgrow.
14# How to cure a yeast infection fast?
Yeast infections are usually treated with antifungal medicine. You should see your doctor to make sure that you have a vaginal yeast infection and not another type of infection. Than you can buy antifungal medicine for yeast infections without a prescription. You can use antifungal creams, ointments, tablets or suppositories that you insert into your vagina. You can apply treatment in one dose or daily for up to seven days.
Your doctor can give you a single dose of fluconazole (antifungal medicine taken by mouth). Do not take the oral fluconazole tablet to treat a yeast infection during pregnancy. It may cause birth defects. If you have recurrent yeast infections or if your yeast infection doesn’t go away after using over-the-counter treatment you may need to take regular doses of antifungal medicine for up to six months.
15# How to cure a yeast infection naturally?
There are some foodstuffs that contain different phytochemicals which are known to have an inhibiting effect on the growth of yeast cells. Consequently, eating such a food on its own it is going to provide a significant boost to your body’s ability to fight the worst effects of yeast infection. Here are some of them:
- Apple cider vinegar – with a strong antifungal properties, apple cider vinegar is known as an effective remedy for yeast infections.
- Garlic – the active ingredient in garlic known as allicin is an acknowledged antifungal agent. Available in the form of capsules.
- Caprylic acid – a medium chain fatty acid that is naturally found in coconut and palm oil. Available in the form of capsules and liquid.
- Lactobacillus acidophilus – naturally found in yoghurt. Available in the form of capsule or powder.
16# How to treat a yeast infection while pregnant?
During pregnancy, only the topical creams are used, or suppositories that contain miconazole or clotrimazole. Do not take the oral fluconazole tablet to treat a yeast infection during pregnancy. It may cause birth defects.
17# What to eat when you have a yeast infection?
Try to eat ‘staple’ gluten free foods such as rice or corn instead of foodstuffs that contain gluten like wheat and barley. It is preferable to eat non-meat based protein alternatives such as tofu, or failing that, at least make sure that all of the meat-based products you eat (including poultry) are completely organically reared. Whole grains offer a very healthy option when you are looking for alternatives that will not exacerbate your susceptibility to yeast infections.
Raw green vegetables are perfect for inclusion in your new healthy diet. They contain many of the vital trace elements and vitamins that you need, but none of the potentially harmful sugars that you will find in some fruits, for example. If you cannot take your vegetables raw, try steaming them.
Some oily fish are high in essential fatty acids, and provide a tasty and highly nutritional alternative to meat products. Mackerel, herring and tuna would all fall into this category. Other foodstuffs that are believed to help stave off yeast infections include: onions, almonds, seaweed, aloe vera, cayenne pepper, cumin, limes and lemons, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and sprouts. Many of these foods have a certain multi-dimensional ‘medical condition fighting’ character, in that they provide benefits on several different levels, all of which can help to combat yeast infections amongst other problems.
18# How to prevent vaginal yeast infection?
You can take some steps to prevent vaginal yeast infection.
- Don,t douche. Douching can disrupt the normal pH balance in the vagina. Douching also removes good bacteria from the vagina that protects you from infection.
- Keep your blood sugar under control if you have diabetes.
- Don’t wear tight panties an clothes. Your vagina needs to breathe. Moisture and heat increases the risk of yeast infection.
- Don,t wear synthetic underwear. Use cotton underwear instead, this helps you keep dry.
- Change tampons, pads, and panty liners often.
- Don,t use scented feminine products, including bubble bath, sprays, tampons, and pads.
- After using the bathroom, always wipe from front to back.
- Avoid hot tubs and very hot baths.
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