Vagina is female sex organ and consists of a 6 to 7 inches long muscular canal starting from opening of vulva and end at cervix and has many tiny glands which are responsible for vaginal secretions. In addition to just being a sex organ, it is also a reproductive organ and is involved in childbirth process. It is very sensitive and, under healthy conditions, it contains many kinds of bacteria and other organisms. Increment in number of these organisms can cause vaginal infection. Yeast Infection is also a kind of very common vaginal infections but not very dangerous. Yeast is a fungus which exists in small number inside vagina.
Yeast infection is a condition in which more than required yeast cells begin residing in vagina and is generally caused by Candida Albicans Yeast. Under normal condition, the amount of bacteria and organisms are balanced in vagina. Lactobacillus acidophilus is a bacterium that controls the growth of other organisms including yeast. When the balance inside vagina gets disturbed due to one reason or the other, yeast starts growing in excess. Abnormality in balance may be caused by use of strong antibiotics to treat some other infection or disease. Another reason of imbalance is high estrogen levels due to pregnancy or hormone replacement therapy. Some other health issues like diabetes or HIV may also change vaginal balance.
Symptoms of yeast infection mostly appear in the week before menstrual period and include:
- Itching or soreness
- Pain or burning during sex and urination
- Thick odorless white discharge coming out of vagina
Although yeast infection is not a very serious problem itself but its presence indicates imbalance and unhealthy vagina. This situation could lead to other serious vaginal infections. Females, in whom symptoms of this infection are present, should consult a doctor. Simple diagnosis of this infection includes visual inspection of vaginal canal for discharge and sores by inserting speculum into vagina or takes the samples of discharge and check for its fungal or bacterial nature. The samples can also be put under microscopic examination. Other method is performing laboratory blood tests.
Yeast infection mostly occurs in women during their course of pregnancy. In such cases, doctor must be consulted for treatment. In case there is no pregnancy, treatment can be done at home with yeast infection medicine available easily in market. Antifungal creams to use inside vagina or antifungal tablets can be taken orally for this purpose. If infection keeps coming back, doctor must be consulted to determine the health issue behind this recurring infection.
Preventive measures that can save females from becoming infected by this problem include;
- Keeping vaginal area dry
- Wipe entire region after using toilet
- Avoid use of tight or skin-fitting undergarments
- If someone is swimmer, change swimming suit immediately after swimming
- Avoid use of feminine hygiene products
Female reproductive organ of vagina is a sexual and reproductive organ and it contains number of microscopic organisms which mostly include bacteria and some small quantity of yeast. Due to some reason, imbalance may develop resulting in increased number of yeast called yeast infection. Treatment is available but adopting preventing measure is more helpful.