Vaginal yeast infection
A great majority of women have suffered at least once from vaginal yeast infection. Some of them have to live with it for a long time. It is a very simple infection, the symptoms of which are easily detectable. So resorting to self treatment may look superficially harmless. Itching, burning, redness and irritation at the vaginal area are some of the symptoms of yeast infection. Inflammation at the opening of the urinary track and swelling of vulva resulting in frequent and painful urination are the symptoms of severe yeast infection. Excessive vaginal discharge and painful intercourse are some other symptoms. Before going for self treatment you have to make sure that the infection you are having is yeast infection only.
What causes vaginal Yeast Infections?
Vaginal yeast infection is caused by a fungus called Candida Albicans in the yeast family. It resides in the mouth, vagina and the digestive track. Normally it does not cause any problem. When the immune system of the body is lowered this fungus attacks the mouth, vagina and skin. Candida infection of the mouth is known as thrush and the vaginal infection is vaginal yeast infection or monilial vaginitis. Under favorable conditions this fungus breeds very fast. This overgrowth also causes infection. Tight fitting undergarments made of synthetic fabrics also hasten the growth of the fungus with the moisture and heat trapped in them. Oral contraceptives and excessive consumption of sugar, starch and yeast also multiplies the growth of the Candida fungus.
(Read more about Yeast Infection Causes)
If it's not a Yeast Infection, What could it be?
Vaginal yeast infection is common among women who suffer from HIV infection. In such women treatment for yeast infection alone is ineffective. Those who have recurrent attacks of vaginal yeast infection recurrent attacks of vaginal yeast infection must undergo test for HIV too. Women suffering from bacterial vaginitis also have discharges like yeast infection. But the discharge has a foul odor. In the case of yeast infection foul order is not present. Untreated bacterial vaginitis causes pelvic inflammatory diseases and may result in infertility. Sexually transmitted diseases like gonorrhea and herpes show almost the same symptoms as yeast infection. The sexually transmitted diseases also cause discharge which may produce itching. Yeast infection caused by excessive consumption of sugar, starch and yeast, obesity diabetes, pregnancy, oral contraceptives and multiple sclerosis do not respond to treatment for yeast infection alone.
Women who are suffering from vaginal yeast infection may have self treatment with over the counter medicines available. But you have to be extremely cautious if the symptoms appear repeatedly. It may be due to some other infections or the yeast infection itself may be due to some other health problems. It is better to consult your doctor even if you wish to resort to self treatment.