What is a yeast infection?
A yeast infection is a fungal infection that causes irritation, intense itchiness of the vagina and vulva, and a thick white discharge from the vagina.
Is yeast infection a Sexually Transmitted Infection?
Although yeast infections can be passed from one person to another during sex, it is not a sexual transmitted infection(STI) since women who aren’t sexually active can also be infected.
How common is yeast infection?
It is estimated that 75% of women will experience a yeast infection at least once in their lifetime.
What causes a yeast infection?
Normally, the vagina contains a healthy balance of bacteria and yeast. These bacteria work to kill any harmful organisms in the vagina. Sometimes this balance can be disrupted, causing a fungus called candida to grow. An overgrowth of this fungus is what causes a yeast infection. The following can bring about changes in this balance:
- Antibiotics: taking too much antibiotics can kill the good bacteria present in your vagina.
- Hormones: changes in hormones, such as when you are pregnant, breast-feeding, going through menopause or taking contraceptives can easily throw off your vaginal pH balance.
- Diabetes: In the event of uncontrolled diabetes, an increase in sugar in the lining of your vagina can be a breeding ground for yeast.
- Poor immune: immune-compromised women are at a higher risk of contracting yeast infections.
- Douching: introducing foreign substances like perfumes and vaginal sprays in your vagina can easily mess with your vaginal pH balance. Avoid using scented sanitary products too.
How will I know I have a yeast infection?
Look out for the following symptoms: thick, white odorless discharge from your vagina, irritation and itchiness of the vagina and vulva, pain during sex and a burning sensation while urinating. If you experience these symptoms, seek medical help.
Is yeast infection treatable?
Yes, a yeast infection can be treated and the symptoms usually begin to go away 2-3 days after starting medication. There’s a high probability of developing a second yeast infection even after treating the first. This shouldn’t get you worried though; just visit your doctor in case this happens.
Can yeast infections affect men?
Yes, men’s bodies too have Candida and an overgrowth of this fungus will cause a yeast infection. They can get this from poor hygiene since the groin area is prone to skin folds and moisture. They can also get it from having unprotected sex with women who have vaginal yeast infection.