Yeast infections are one of life’s unpleasant issues. Most women will experience at least one yeast infection during their lifetime. The discharge, itching, burning, and vaginal rash can leave any gal feeling more than a little uncomfortable. However, because a yeast infection shares symptoms with some STIs it’s always a good idea to make a trip to see your OBGYN if you are sexually active. Here’s what to know about treating yeast infections and when to turn to a doctor.
Why do yeast infections happen?
An overgrowth of Candida, a type of fungus, leads to a yeast infection. While there may be fungus present in the vagina at any point in time, often it’s not enough to cause symptoms; however, when there’s overgrowth this leads to an infection.
Certain factors can increase your risk for yeast infections,
- Taking antibiotics
- A compromised immune system
- Hormonal imbalance
- Poor diet
What are the signs?
The most common signs of a yeast infection include,
- A thick, white vaginal discharge
- Burning and swelling of the vagina
- Pain with urination or sex
How do I treat a yeast infection?
While certainly uncomfortable, a yeast infection is easy to treat. In fact, many women find relief from going to their local pharmacy and picking up yeast infection medication (you can purchase these products over the counter). If you don’t experience relief from your symptoms about a week after treatment, then it’s time to call your OBGYN.
If you’ve had a yeast infection before and you recognize the symptoms then over-the-counter treatments should be fine; however, if this is your first time dealing with a yeast infection you should turn to your doctor to find out if that’s exactly what it is. If you’re dealing with severe symptoms or if you are dealing with recurring infections (infections that happen at least four times a year) you should turn to your OBGYN.
Your OBGYN can do everything from prescribing yeast infection medication to providing STI screenings and HPV vaccines. If you’re experiencing symptoms of a yeast infection, turn to your OBGYN today for the treatment you need.