All you need to know about yeast infections

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We talk to a gynaecologist about the he common causes and symptoms of yeast infections.

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Dr Frances Paterson, who’s a gynecologist and obstetrician says “Causes of vaginal discharge can vary substantially, from it just being a normal physiological discharge to an infective cause. The normal flora (bunch of bugs) of the vagina changes under the influence of circulating oestrogens, therefore the balance between health and disease of the vagina is a delicate one. Use of strong smelling soap and douching can change the balance, presenting an opportunity for infections.”

Overgrowth of yeast can result from:

Antibiotic use, which decreases lactobacillus bacteria in your vagina and changes the pH balance

Pregnancy

Uncontrolled diabetes

Impaired immune system

Taking oral contraceptives or hormone therapy, which increases estrogen levels

Candida albicans is the most common type of fungus to cause yeast infections

Symptoms

Too much yeast in your vagina causes vaginal itching and burning

A burning sensation during intercourse or while urinating

Redness and swelling of the vulva

Vaginal pain and soreness

Vaginal rash

Watery vaginal discharge

Thick, white, odor-free vaginal discharge with a cottage cheese appearance

“If one you are concerned, visit your doctor who can observe and treat. He may do a high vaginal swab to determine the exact cause of the discharge and then give the treatment that will work appropriately,” concludes Dr Paterson.

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