8 Signs of a Yeast Infection

8 Signs of a Yeast Infection

Tooba Pasha Waqar |Apr 8, 2021

What Are the Symptoms of a Yeast Infection?

Knowing that you have a yeast infection may sound a little gross, but it’s not as bad or concerning as you may think.

Yeast infections are relatively common in men and women, although women bear the brunt of it. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that three in every four women get a yeast infection at least once in their life.

However, most only realize they have it once it is diagnosed. If you are worried you might have a yeast infection, you must learn the causes and symptoms. That way, you can find a way to mitigate your chances of ever having yeast infection again.

It’s a common fact that every vagina has bacteria and yeast cells. While these cells and bacteria do remain balanced, an increase in the yeast cells leads to the vagina experiencing a yeast infection.

The bacteria present in the vagina is known as lactobacillus, whereas the fungus or yeast cells are called candida. The bacteria typically keep the yeast cells in check, but an imbalance in a person’s system leads to the bacteria working ineffectively. That, in turn, leads to an increase of yeast, which causes the symptoms to develop.

The Causes of a Yeast Infection

Unfortunately, multiple reasons can lead to a yeast infection, such as:

  • Stress
  • Lack of sleep
  • Hormonal imbalance, especially if you are near your menstrual cycle date
  • Bad eating habits, such as eating sugary drinks
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Weak immune system
  • Pregnancy
  • Antibiotics (some can decrease the number of good bacteria in your vagina)

The most common type of yeast infections that occur are Candidiasis and Candida albicans. Thankfully, both are easily treatable and require essential medication. However, for women with recurring yeast infections, these may not be the specific infections causing problems. You will need a doctor’s appointment and a lab test to determine which infection you have.

What are the Symptoms of a Yeast Infection?

Vaginal yeast infections share a common selection of symptoms. These include:

  • Swelling around the vagina
  • Itchiness in the vulva folds
  • Burning sensation during sex or urination
  • Painful sex
  • Redness
  • Soreness
  • Rash-like patches on the vulva folds
  • White, whitish-grey, or creamy, clumpy vaginal discharge

For the last symptom, the consistency could be watery, but the discharge may also be hard and sticky, so much that it may not be easy to remove. In that case, it’s best to leave the discharge as is and wash the area. You must be sure it is clean.

In some situations, you may also experience a complicated yeast infection. However, that occurs if you do not address the main problem early on.

You might experience symptoms such as itchiness, swelling, redness, and sores on the skin. But keep in mind that there are several types of yeast infections, and the symptoms may vary.

Yeast Infections in Men

Yeast infections among men are not as common as they are for women. But they do experience similar symptoms, including irritation, itching, redness, and discharge. For them, the infection will affect the head of their penis.

Please note that yeast infections are more common among men who are not circumcised, and those who have an overgrowth of yeast on their skin. But, men can also get yeast infections if their partner has a yeast infection as well.

Is a Yeast Infection an STI?

Considering that one can transmit a yeast infection through sex, you may wonder whether that marks it as an STI or sexually transmitted infection.

But, the chances of one person getting it from an infected person are slim. And since yeast infections are not typically caused through sexual activity, they do not count as STIs.

When Should I See a Doctor?

If the symptoms mentioned above are similar to what you’re experiencing, you may have a yeast infection. To get it treated, you will need to visit the doctor.

And while you will be tempted to try any at-home remedies, don’t. Home remedies such as applying yogurt to the infected area and others have had no scientific backing. If you want to be treated correctly, you will need a doctor’s prescription.

After a pelvic exam and lab test, your doctor will know whether to diagnose a yeast infection. If they do, they will prescribe a topical antifungal medication and prescribe medicine like fluconazole, which you’ll need to take by mouth.

The infection should go away within a week, but if it doesn’t, you will need to follow up with regular doses of your antifungal medication until the doctor is satisfied.

How to Prevent a Yeast Infection

There is no concrete solution to preventing a yeast infection, but there are certain things you can do to reduce the risk of getting one, such as:

  • Avoid tight pantyhose or underwear
  • Wear loose-fitting skirts and clothes
  • Wear cotton underwear and clothes made from natural fibers
  • Do not use fragranced tampons, deodorant pads, or feminine deodorants
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Avoid using hot baths or hot tubs
  • Change out of wet clothing such as swimsuits promptly once you’ve been in the water
  • Do not douche

Closing Thoughts

In general, yeast infections are not dangerous, but they can make life uncomfortable for a while. Avoid the problem by taking good care of your body and getting medical help if you think you have an infection.
With any luck, this will be the only time you’ll have to worry about getting a yeast infection in your whole life.

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