A vaginal thrush (vaginal thrush) is an infection in the area of the mucous membrane in a woman’s intimate area, the vagina. Pregnant women and women suffering from diabetes are more likely to suffer from vaginal thrush. But other factors can also be a triggering cause. Typical signs are a watery discharge and severe itching in the vaginal area.
What is a vaginal thrush?
Vaginal thrush, also known as vaginal thrush, is an infection of the lining of the female vagina. This is often associated with severe itching in the vagina; pain during sexual intercourse is also not uncommon in this disease. Pain when urinating can also occur. See deluxesurveillance for Circulatory Arrest (or Cardiovascular Failure) Guide.
In addition, the vagina is usually visibly reddened and swollen. This disease can also be recognized by changes in the mucous membrane – grey-white and crumbly deposits can often be observed. The vaginal thrush is a very common form of infection in women: at least three out of four women are affected by a vaginal thrush at least once in their lives.
Vaginal fungus occurs particularly frequently in pregnant women or in women who suffer from diabetes. Certain medications can also cause this symptom. Antibiotics are among those drugs that promote vaginal thrush. However, taking birth control pills can also lead to vaginal thrush.
Especially with diabetes, the immune system of the vagina is weakened and fungi can spread unhindered. In most cases, the pathogen is a yeast fungus, in most cases this is transmitted during sexual intercourse. Poor hygiene can also lead to vaginal thrush. On the other hand, excessive hygiene can also lead to the infestation of vaginal thrush.
But other causes are also conceivable. For example, women who suffer from a generally weakened immune system or from stress are more susceptible to vaginal thrush.
Symptoms, Ailments & Signs
Signs of the presence of a vaginal thrush are redness and itching in the vagina area. The itching can occur when touching the genitals or be permanent. It is usually the first symptom. The redness is not necessarily present from the start and can only be found in the inner vaginal area. There may be pain during intercourse or urination.
In most cases, the vaginal thrush is not directly visible as such. Whitish deposits that look like fungus are actually rather rare on the labia. However, vaginal thrush can often be seen during a pelvic exam.
The entire vaginal area can swell and burn due to vaginal mycosis. The inside of the vagina and the labia can be affected. The pain can vary in intensity. The skin around the vagina can also become red and cracked. Sometimes there are visible blisters or a rash in the intimate area.
These symptoms vary in severity – depending on the other vaginal flora and the type of fungus. In most cases, there is a whitish discharge that is creamy to crumbly in consistency. The smell in the intimate area is described as unpleasant.
If left untreated, vaginal thrush can continue to spread. Infection of the uterus and bladder can also occur as a complication if the vaginal fungus is not treated adequately. In general, the disease can become a chronic infection if it is not treated with the appropriate ointments or tablets or is not treated for a sufficiently long time. A typical complication of vaginal thrush is the infection of the partner.
Unprotected intercourse or insufficient hygiene, for example when using towels, can encourage the fungus to be transmitted from person to person. If the intimate partner does not treat himself consistently, he is at risk of infection. If both partners do not have their fungal infection treated adequately, the infection will constantly flare up again in both of those affected, as they keep infecting each other.
As a complication, this can sometimes lead to the fact that the vaginal fungus not only spreads further and further in the body and weakens the immune system. There is also the threat of the complication that the fungus itself gradually becomes immune to the active ingredients in ointments and creams that have been used up to now. In order to prevent this, treatment should always be given early and, above all, for a sufficiently long time.
When should you go to the doctor?
Itching in the intimate area and a slight swelling of the labia indicate a vaginal thrush infection. Gynecological advice is required when the symptoms impair well-being and rapidly increase in severity. If the symptoms do not go away through adequate intimate hygiene, it is best to consult the gynaecologist. Women who suffer from hormonal fluctuations or who have a weakened immune system due to illness are particularly at risk. People who take certain medications such as antibiotics or rheumatism drugs also belong to the risk groups and must go to the gynecologist with the symptoms mentioned.
In the case of recurring vaginal yeast infections, possible sources of infection must be identified and eliminated together with the doctor. Other doctors who can be consulted are an internist or a gastroenterologist, depending on the symptoms and suspected cause . If the vaginal thrush is treated early, it should subside within a few days. In the event of persistent symptoms and any side effects and interactions caused by the prescribed antibiotics, it is best to inform the responsible doctor so that the medication can be adjusted.
Treatment & Therapy
If the first signs of a vaginal thrush are recognizable, affected women should consult a gynecologist. This will take a so-called swab, which will be examined in the laboratory. If a vaginal thrush is then diagnosed, appropriate treatment must be carried out. With this, the symptoms usually disappear within three to four days.
Treatment is usually with so-called antimycotics, which are drugs specifically designed to treat fungal diseases. Vaginal suppositories and ointments also help well against this disease. When vaginal thrush occurs in a woman for the first time, it usually goes away within a few days with appropriate treatment.
In order to prevent vaginal fungus, one should pay attention to sufficient hygiene in the genital area. Your partner should also be encouraged to do the same. However, you should not overdo it with personal hygiene and avoid using harsh bath additives or creams if possible. Likewise, intimate sprays usually do more harm than good. Clear water with a pH of 7 is best for cleaning the vagina.
Tight-fitting clothing and fabrics made of synthetic fibers can also promote vaginal thrush – at best, you should avoid them. Underwear made of cotton, silk or hemp is better. It is also important to choose the right pads and panty liners. These should not be coated with plastic. Toilet hygiene can also be crucial; with this you should always wipe from front to back and never the other way around – this way bacteria and fungi hardly have a chance.
Anyone who has been affected by this disease several times should use a simple but effective trick: simply insert a tampon soaked in natural yoghurt into the vagina overnight. This restores the natural protective mechanism of the vagina.
After the successful treatment of a vaginal thrush, the main concern is to prevent it from reoccurring. In the area of aftercare, numerous measures are therefore necessary to prevent a re-infestation of vaginal fungus. Of course, this includes regular and gentle intimate hygiene, as well as wearing clean underwear made of natural fibers.
It is also advisable not to use antiseptic bath additives, soaps or perfumed intimate sprays. This protects the natural balance of the vaginal flora and remains immune. If the vaginal skin is extremely dry, it is advisable to use a specific lubricant during intercourse.
Here, too, care should be taken to ensure that the composition is as natural as possible. If vaginal fungal diseases occur more frequently, the partner should also be treated and take preventive measures afterwards. After a bowel movement, it is always important to clean backwards, i.e. in the direction of the back. It is important that the germs from the intestine do not get into the vagina.
Furthermore, the consumption of sweets should be limited and a healthy, balanced and high-fiber diet should be ensured. In diabetics, the sugar level should be well adjusted and checked regularly. If symptoms recur, which could indicate a vaginal thrush, a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible. Although a recurring vaginal thrush is usually harmless, rapid therapy can prevent the spread of a new vaginal thrush and thus prevent stressful recurrences.
You can do that yourself
The vaginal or vaginal thrush is an unpleasant disease that can be easily alleviated with self-help. Not infrequently, this can even make a visit to the doctor and the associated treatment unnecessary. However, this only applies to cases in which the clinical picture of the patient is already known. This is often the case when the vaginal thrush has become a recurring phenomenon.
Since the vaginal thrush is often triggered by antibiotics, it is helpful to only take them when they are actually necessary as part of self-help. If in doubt, it is always advisable to consult the doctor treating you.
Furthermore, itching often exacerbates the clinical picture enormously and leads to swelling or redness. Tampons soaked in natural yoghurt can provide relief. This has two advantages: on the one hand, the yoghurt cools the irritated tissue, on the other hand, yoghurt helps to restore the natural flora of the vagina. The environment is rebalanced, which is the first step in fighting the fungal infection. This measure is supported by gentle cleaning with lukewarm water, which does not additionally irritate the vagina. Underwear should be made of cotton and not synthetic fibers to encourage sweating and fungal growth. The underwear is best washed at 60 degrees or more.