Vaginitis is a common inflammation of the vagina which can cause a discharge to occur along with itchiness and pain. The cause is almost always a disturbance in the balance of vaginal bacteria or other infections. It can also lead towards hormonal shifts, such as a reduced level of estrogen, right after menopause. Most common types of vaginitis are as follows:
- Bacterial vaginitis,
- Yeast infections,
- and vaginal atrophy (atrophic vaginitis)
Yeast infections are definitely the most common type of vaginitis, characterized by vaginal irritation, intense itchiness and vaginal discharge. Vaginal yeast infection can affect vagina and vulva as well. You might have heard about this condition going about by the name of candidiasis and it’s fairly common. Three out of four women will experience one type of candidiasis during the course of their lives and with most of them there is a chance of witnessing it twice or more.
This particular infection is not considered to be sexually transmittable, even though it can spread over oral-genital contact as well. Treatment is usually highly successful, with a possible exception in form of periodic infections when they occur four or more times in a single year. In that case, a longer and more intensive therapy might be required.
Basic symptoms of vaginal yeast infection
Symptoms of vaginal yeast infection can be mild and severe, including itchiness and irritation, being most prominent around the vagina and vulva. Burning, particularly during sexual intercourse or during urination is also expected, while redness and swelling of the vagina is expected to appear sooner or later.
Vaginal pain and overall oversensitivity is the most common symptom, along with a thick white discharge coming from the vagina.
Most common causes of yeast infections
The vaginal yeast infection is always caused by yeast called Candida. This is a microorganism which is always present inside the vagina, together with bacteria. Vagina contains a balanced mixture of fungus and bacteria, with Lactobacillus being assigned to produce acids which are maintaining this ever so important balance.
If there is a disturbance of the healthy balance of any sort, whether this was hormonally caused or by any other cause, an excess production of the yeast will occur. Too much yeast in the vagina can lead to vaginal itchiness, burning and other characteristic signs and symptoms of a yeast infection.
In other words, vaginal infection can be caused by antibiotic therapy which usually leads towards a reduction of the Lactobacillus number inside the vagina, also causing shifts in the vaginal pH. This enables an excessive production of these funguses.
Pregnancy is a period where there is lot of hormonal changes and in some cases; this may cause a yeast infection to occur. Diabetes which is not kept under control is yet another common cause of all kinds of yeast infections, not just vaginal. Disturbances done to your immunological system can also cause more issues with proper bacteria and acid production.
Basically, all procedures which are changing the amount and type of bacteria which are normally present in the vagina, such as medical checkups, any type of pills may cause irritation due to inadequate vaginal moisture. Most commonly, vaginal yeast infection derives from one particular species of Candida yeast, known as Candida albicans. Sometimes, however, other types of Candida fungus may be causing the symptoms. Candida albicans responds rather well to typical treatment methods for yeast infections while other species sometimes pose more resistance towards conventional treatment and therefore require more attention.
Treatment of Candida yeast infections
Treatment of the Candida type vaginal yeast infection depends on the severity of the infection itself as well as how advanced it is. For treatment of mild to moderate episodes of yeast infections, your doctor will most likely recommend antifungal creams, oils, and pills etc. which are effective in treating yeast infections in most cases. These are applied once per day or once every three days usually. Your doctor might prescribe some of these medications while preparations might be available without receipt. Side effects coming from these medications are rare and might include a sensation of burning or irritation during application.
If you’re done with the prescribed treatment and your symptoms haven’t subdued yet, you need to contact your doctor as soon as possible, as you might be dealing with an advanced yeast infection.
Treatment of complicated yeast infection is required if you’re experiencing severe signs and symptoms such as overall redness, swelling and itchiness which leads towards creating lumps. Recurrent yeast infections (four or more times per year) are a definite sign that you require an advanced method of treatment. These include oral ingested medication as well as a specific regime of maintenance and hygiene, which is particularly important in case of repeated infections. This type of therapy usually lasts from 7 to 14 days and its focus is on preventing excessive production of yeasts and any other future infections to come. Therapy of maintenance initiates after an initial treatment and always includes pills which are taken orally.
Prevention of yeast infections
Yeast infections are also very dependent on your genetics and predisposition. Some people are having severe issues with prevention of the yeast infections and in most cases a severe therapy is required just to keep it all under control. Basic rules regarding yeast all revolve around establishing a proper dieting regime. Sugar intake should be kept at a minimum, as this is what yeast infections strive on. You might have noticed an excess of yeasts all over your body after consummation of sweet foods, which is easy to explain. Yeast feeds of this sugar and therefore you should really limit this resource as you will automatically be aiding your body in battling with the yeast infection. Also, if your partner is experiencing any of the above mentioned issues, with periodical yeast infections, the doctor will most likely recommend a treatment for your partner or usage of protection during sexual intercourse. With all that said yeast infections are common but might become a nuisance in terms of treatment and maintenance.