What is a Yeast Infection, or Candidiasis?
A vaginal yeast infection is inflammation of the vagina that is caused by an abundance of yeast typically found in limited amounts on the body. Yeast infections are common occurrences that many adult women get over their lifetime. These infections may occur more frequently in women who have recently used antibiotics, douches or oral contraceptives.People who may be more at risk for these types of infections include those with weakened immune systems or diabetes, those who have used antibiotics long-term or women who are pregnant.
While not common, genital candidiasis can occur in men and is characterized by an itchy rash in the genital region.
What are Symptoms of a Yeast Infection?
Mild to moderate symptoms may include:
- Itching or irritation in the genital area
- A burning feeling while urinating or during intercourse
- Clumpy or thin white discharge which may have a mild cheese-like odor
- Swelling, redness of the vulva
Signs of a more complicated yeast infection may include:
- Severe signs or symptoms such as more wide-spread redness, itching or swelling that may have caused tears, cracks or sores
- Recurring yeast infections
How do you Diagnose and Treat Yeast Infections?
It is important to see a healthcare professional if:
- You are unsure whether you have a yeast infection
- This is the first time you’ve had symptoms of a yeast infection
The symptoms of yeast infections may be similar to those of other genital infections, such as urinary tract infections. A physician may perform a pelvic exam for signs of infection and also may collect a sample of vaginal secretions to determine the correct treatment.
Yeast infections are most often treated with antifungal cream, suppositories or pills. These medications have an 80-90 percent success rate.
How do you Prevent a Yeast Infection?
Some of the best ways to prevent a yeast infection include:
- Wearing loose-fitting pants or skirts, as well as cotton underwear
- Changing out of wet clothes including swimming suits or workout clothes, as soon as possible
- Avoiding very hot baths and hot tubs
If you think you are showing signs of a yeast infection, consult a physician for prompt diagnosis and treatment. MedSpring locations are open with a medical team on-site from 9am-9pm, 7 days a week. Walk-ins are welcome, or call ahead to make an appointment.
Find a MedSpring location near you.