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What is Vaginal Yeast Infection?

vaginal yeast infection

Yeast infection or vaginal candidiasis – is a contagious disease. Women suffer from this infection more often than men do. According to statistics, 80% of women have had a vaginal yeast infection. Vaginal candidiasis is caused by a Candida germ that is why the infection is called candidiasis.

Specialists do not use the term “yeast infection” – it is a common name. If you have some symptoms of this disease, it may have the following names:

  • Urogenital candidiasis – in men
  • Vulvovaginal or vaginal candidiasis – in women

Many people think that there is only genital candidiasis. But this bacteria can live in

  • Oral cavity
  • Digestive tract
  • Vagina

But more often we come across with the genital one, that’s why the most widely spread is vaginal yeast infection.
Healthy people have Candida bacteria as well. Yet, candidiasis, symptoms which cause discomfort, is diagnosed in women, when there are too many of these bacteria present.

symptoms of yeast infection

What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Vaginal Candidiasis(Yeast Infection)?

To diagnose this infection, one should know its signs and symptoms. Men and women have similar signs of genital candidiasis.

Vaginal discharge caused by yeast infection.Whitish-grey vaginal discharge in vagina.

What is a Yeast Infection in Women?

When a girl or a woman suffers from this disease, its symptoms are quiet noticeable and obvious. If you don’t know what yeast infection in women is, pay attention to the following symptoms listed below.

Symptoms of yeast infection in women:

  • Increase of vaginal discharge.
  • Vaginal discharge is typically thick, whitish-grey in colour of a cottage-cheese-like consistency.
  • Discharge has a fermented milk odour.
  • Itching and burning of the vaginal area.
  • Pain, redness, swollenness of external vulvar lips.
  • Itching during urination.
  • Itching and pain during sexual intercourse.

What is a Yeast Infection in Men?

Yeast infection in men has the similar symptoms.

Symptoms of yeast infection in men:

  • Redness and swelling of the skin of the penis head and foreskin.
  • A cottage-cheese-like fur on penis head.
  • Pain, redness and itching of the genital area.
  • Itching during urination.
  • Pain during sexual intercourse.

What Causes a Vaginal Yeast Infection?

How can you catch a yeast infection? Some people think that you can get ill only if you lead a sexual life. But this isn’t the case. When you get ill, the reasons for that can be different. One of them is the decrease of the amount of “good” bacteria in your body, and it doesn’t matter where, in your bowels or your genitals. With the death of the “good” bacteria, the place occupied by them becomes vacant for pathogenic microflora that quickly begin to inhabit the new “territory”.

The reasons for vaginal yeast infections are not deeply studied at this point, but any doctor can answer the question “What is a yeast infection in women?”  Sadly, no one can explain why some women suffer from the unbearable symptoms and signs of yeast infection and some women may not notice any symptoms at all. However, a profound approach towards the treatment helps to bring the disease into remission and to forget about it for some time, or, perhaps, even forever.

vaginal yeastThe reasons for yeast infection there are many reasons for a yeast infection to occur, but here are some of the more common ones:

  • Taking medicines (oral contraceptives in large doses, antibiotics, hormonal preparations);
  • Weakening of the immune system.
  • Sexually transmitted diseases (STD).
  • Pregnancy, menopause and other hormone system changes.
  • Atopic dermatitis.
  • Diabetes.

Some other reasons:

  • Obesity.
  • Usage of dietary supplement.
  • Diet rich in carbohydrates and fats.
  • Start of sexual life or change of a partner.
  • Tight underwear (especially synthetic one).
  • Usage of topical anti-infective agents after casual sex.
  • Inflammation of small pelvis (ovary, neck of the womb etc.).
  • Acute exacerbation of chronic diseases (TB, diabetes, gastritis, etc.).
  • Vaginal douching.
  • Distortion of intestinal flora.
  • Anal sex without taking necessary measures of hygiene.
  • Contact with infected things.

A combination of two or more factors increases a chance to notice symptoms of a yeast infection.

What Can Worsen the Situation?

Things that encourage yeast infection:

  • Drinking alcohol and smoking.
  • Frequent usage of tampons.
  • AIDs.
  • Polluted environment.
  • Mechanical removal of bacteria during washing.
  • Metabolic disorder.
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Is a Vaginal Yeast Infection Dangerous?

The infection does not do a lot of harm. The diagnosis vaginal candidiasis is usually accompanied by other more dangerous diseases, as yeast infections in women can be a signal of some other illnesses. That is why, the answer to the question, what yeast infection in women is, can vary: for somebody it is a result of herpetic fever, for others – a sign of poor immune system, and for somebody else – a reminder to cut down on pastry.

Vaginalcandidiasis can be a symptom of AIDs, diabetes, cancer and more.

To diagnose vaginal candidiasis, doctor needs to exclude other sexually transmitted diseases. To do so, you need to have negative tests on:

  • yeast infectionmycoplasma;
  • ureaplasma;
  • chlamydia;
  • gonococci;
  • gardnerellavaginalis;
  • trichomonad;
  • herpesand etc.

Usually one of the infections listed above is found and vaginal candidiasis and that disease are treated together. In this case, vaginal candidiasis is recorded as a complication of the first disease.

Candidiasis is the Most Dangerous When You are Pregnant.

Complaints of yeast infection among pregnant women happen two or three times more often. It is connected, first of all, with the changes in the endocrine profile. The microflora of vagina is changes – this is the main reason for their getting ill. But, if you ask a girl what yeast infection is, she would probably answer that it is a discomfort, but for a pregnant it is a very dangerous disease.

As it has been said before, candidiasis is an increase of monilia, yeastlike bacteria. These bacteria is present in the body of a future mother. Useful bacteria make up 95 per cent of flora in vagina. They produce lactic acid. It preserves a рН of 4.0 in there – such pH is fatal for most of pathogenic germs. This way lactic acid helps lacto bacteria to protect vagina and womb from pathogenic flora getting in there. When yeast infection develops in pregnant women, pH rises, vagina environment becomes more alkaline and the number of bacteria goes down. Very quickly, Candida bacteria start to multiply causing yeast infection. The amount of useful flora is decreasing because of the growth of pathogenic one.

During pregnancy, illness can cause a lot of discomfort: itching can be literary unbearable. It would be much better if during the period of pregnancy, the disease stays in remission. If you have a yeast infection while waiting to give birth to your child, pathogen bacteria can get into the womb and affect the fetus. After its birth, the baby will have white tarnish in its mouth (on the tongue, palate and gums). But the consequences of it can be much worse: pathogenic bacteria can affect the breathing system or other crucial systems.

Candidiasis: How to Treat?

How do you get rid of a yeast infection? First, remember: if one of the partners is infected, both should undergo the treatment. It is possible that one of the partners is a carrier. Signs of candidiasis
may not be noticeable. And the other, those with a low immune system, can always get infected with genital candidiasis.

Vaginal Candidiasis: How to Treat Yeast Infections in Women?

For treatment, there is a great number of oral preparations and remedies for topical usage:

Forms of systemic (oral) agents:

  • tablets;
  • capsules.

Forms of topical appliance:

  • ointment;
  • vaginal tablets;
  • creams;
  • vaginal douching;
  • vaginal suppositories.

How to treat yeast infections and to forget about it forever? Treating yeast infection in women with a combination of systemic agents and topical appliances is the most effective.

Tablets kill fungus in the whole body (digestive tract, oral cavity, reproductive system), not locally. Systemic agents are excreted out of the bodywith urine – this is an additional disease prevention in the urinary system (kidneys, bladder).

Self-treatment of vaginal candidiasis is the most common mistake. Self-chosen remedy for yeast infection cannot guarantee a complex and thorough treatment of this disease. Going this way the only thing you can get is the absence of its symptoms, the illness will get chronical – fungus will still remain in the body. During the next weakening of the immune system or with the balance distortion of microflora, genital candidiasis or any other type (oral, digestive) will let you know about it for sure. If you suffer from candidiasis, see a doctor for the best course of action.

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candidiasis treatment  If you suspect, that you have a yeast infection, treatment should begin with an appointment with a doctor. It is especially important, if you have yeast infection while you are pregnant.
Conventional medicine can offer traditional treatment of yeast infection. The disease is treated in complex at home using systematic agents together with topical ones.

If a commercial claims to treat the illness in a day, it is a lie. Such a “miracle-remedy” helps to disguise the symptoms of yeast infection in women, but fungus spores remain in the body, in two weeks they get mature and the disease comes back again. If you bought a medicine at a drug store and the therapy regimen lasts for three or six days, you can’t call it a treatment.

To succeed in treating candidiasis in women, you need at least 2 weeks. That is the period of time during which candida spores get mature. After a two-week therapy regimen active forms of fungus die. But spores may still remain.
After you have taken the full therapy regiment, in two weeks’ time you need to repeat the treatment once again both in women and in men. The second course helps to kill the left mature spores. The second course is less intensive.
The next two weeks’ regimen course should take place in two and six months. That is how the treatment of vaginal candidiasis in women should occur.

If the symptoms are not very bad, you may be okay with just a topical remedy. Such remedies include:

  • Clotrimazole (Antifungol,Jenamazol 100,Candibene,Canesten,Canison, Clotrimazolum, Candid);
  • Isoconazolum (Gyno-Travogenovulum);
  • Miconazolum (Gynezol 7, Gyno-daktarin, Klion-D 100);
  • Natamycinum (Pimafucin)
  • Nystatinum (Polygynax, Tergynan).

The last one is considered to be out-of-date, as Candida fungus can be resistant to it.

How to Treat Yeast Infection in Pregnant Women?

If infection appears during pregnancy, self-treatment is out of the question. During the first three months it is forbidden to take any quick acting drugs, including “Candid.” At this period of time vaginal bathes with antiseptics and herbs can be effective.

During the second and third terms suppositories and cream “Pimafucin” can be used, 1% cream and 1% solution with Clotrimazole “Candid”.

yeast infection in pregnantComplex therapy of candidiasis in women can include vaginal tablets.

Treating Yeast Infections at Home

If you have candidiasis symptoms bothering you, doctors can prescribe you the following remedies:

  • boracic acid;
  • alkaline solutions (soda);
  • castellani’spaint.

These remedies don’t allow the fungus to stick to the parries of vagina, but they don’t prevent the growth of spores and don’t cure a woman ill with candidiasis, symptoms will appear in a few weeks.

Yeast Infections: Treating with Conventional Remedies

If you don’t know how to treat yeast infections, you can try conventional methods of treating candidiasis. If you have yeast infections, using conventional remedies may prevent an allergic reaction for drugs. The following recipes are suitable even for pregnant women. Traditional treatment includes using infusions and decoctions as well as douching.

Infusions and Decoctions 

If you don’t know how to get rid of yeast infection, try an infusion of touch-and-heal (Hypericumperforatum). Mix one tablespoon of touch-and-hea l with 1 glass of boiling water. Let sit for a few minutes to infuse. Drink one 1/3 of a glass three times a day.

High cranberry flowers (not berries) infusion. Mix one tablespoon of high cranberry flowers, with 1 glass of boiling water. Leave for some time to infuse. Take 1 tablespoon of infusion four times a day.

Though symptoms can be soothed with the help of herb decoctions

  1. Milfoil – 1 tb.spoon
    Clary leaves– 1tb.spoon
    Rosemary leaves – 1tb.spoon
    Oak bark – 2tb.spoon
    Pour 3 litres of boiling water into this mixture and leave. When it gets a bit colder,filter through the gauze. Douche two times a day (in the morning and in the evening).
  2. Knotgrass –5tb.spoon
    Nettle – 3tb.spoon
    Oak bark – 1 tb.spoon
    Camomile – 1tb.spoon
    Pour 3 litres of boiling water into this mixture and boil on slow fire for 5 minutes. Cool. Douche two times a day (in the morning and in the evening) or you can make vaginal tampons.
  3. One teaspoon of 2% alcohol solvent of calendula pour into ¼ glass of warm water. Douche for a few days two times a day (in the morning and in the evening). Such douching can be done if you have a cervical erosion.
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If you have candidiasis, conventional treatment can help you. But before doing it you must consult your doctor.

treatmentOne more method is douching with alkaline an acidic waters. To make them you need:

  • For alkaline water – 4tb spoons of soda to dissolve them in 1 glass of water (200-250 ml).
  • For acidic water – 1,5 teaspoon of boric acid dissolve in a glass of water.

In the evening, warm up the two types of water to room temperature. Douching before going to bed (with a syringe of 10 or 20 cubes ) alkaline and acidic water with a pause of 20 minutes between. You should do 10 douchings all in all.

To cure genital candidiasis without additional medicines for yeast infection is impossible. But such douchings help to soothe the acute symptoms of yeast infection.

If you think that you have a yeast infection, conventional methods of treatment as well as medical ones should be prescribed by a gynaecologist.

Prevention of Vaginal Candidiasis in Women

When treating most fungus infections a doctor can prescribe an additional anti-fungal agent against yeast infections. To prevent the disease you should stick to the following rules:

  • Wear cotton lingerie, not synthetic one
  • Choose pants of the right size – tight ones are out of the question.
  • No douching during taking a shower or a bath.
  • Don’t use vaginal antiseptics and intimate washing gels (especially anti-bacterial ones) too often.
  • Don’t use perfumed soap, intimate deodorants, scented pads and tampons.
  • Washing intimate places direct the stream of water from front to back, not fromback to front in order not to track infection from your rectum.

Following these rules is very important if you want to prevent candidiasis while pregnant.

If you have diabetes you should control your blood glucose to help prevent candidiasis. When its level in your blood increases, it means that the microflora for pathogenic bacteria is getting better.

What Should a Doctor Do?

  1. Take a urogenital swab to define:
    • amount of leucocytes;
    • contents and quality of flora;
    • whether you have sexually transmitted diseases or not.
    • – Examine the neck of womb, make a vaginoscopy. Erosion can be a sign of a large number of genital infections and this, in its turn, may lead to yeast infection.
    • – To establish a endocrine profile on definite days of menstrual cycle you should take tests on hormones, send you to have immunogrammade and to consult immunologist.

what should a doctor doDoctor should pay attention to:

  • Discharge should be transparent.
  • The amount should not exceed a teaspoon.
  • The amount of discharge is not big so you don’t need panty liners.
  • Discharge should be odourless.
  • You shouldn’t have itching, burning or any discomfort in vagina, external sex organs or during urination.
  • Before emmenia or during pregnancy the amount of discharge can slightly increase as a result of endocrine profile changes.

The disease can be provoked by an allergy. If you have a difficult case of candidiasis and your gynaecologist can’t define the reasons for it, try to consult an allergologist. The development of the diseased can be provoked by an allergic reaction; in this case, the treatment won’t be of any affect until there is an allergen in the body.

If the therapy prescribed by your doctor doesn’t help you, tell him or her about it. Perhaps, you don’t have Candida albicans – the most common kind of fungus – but some other type of it.

Pay attention that all the recipes and recommendations on this page about how to treat candidiasis in women are only for reference information. If you think you have it, see your doctor!


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