A yeast infection is a medical condition that causes intense irritation, itching and discharge from the vagina and vulva. This is an extremely common condition that affects nearly every woman at some point in their life. While the discharge and pain may resemble a sexually transmitted disease, you have absolutely nothing to worry about. Yeast infections are just a form of vaginal inflammation.
A healthy vagina naturally produces a small amount of yeast. The vagina also produces bacteria that are supposed to keep the yeast cells under control. If the bacteria do not do their job and too many yeast cells start to grow in the vagina, then you will get a yeast infection. While this can be caused by any change in the body, there are several common causes of a yeast infection.
The most common cause of yeast infection during pregnancy is the use of antibiotics. These drugs are designed to kill harmful bacteria in the body that are causing you to be sick, but they can also kill the good bacteria in your vagina. If too many of the good bacteria cells are killed in your vagina, then you will most likely have an overgrowth of yeast cells.
High estrogen levels will also cause you to get a yeast infection. A healthy woman is usually not going to have estrogen levels high enough to cause a yeast infection. Women that are on hormone therapy, pregnant or taking high-dose estrogen birth control pills are much more susceptible to yeast infections. All three of these things will provide far more estrogen than is normally found in the body, which drastically increases the risk of developing this condition.
Uncontrollable diabetes and an impaired immune system are the other two common causes of a yeast infection. A diabetic with poorly controlled sugar levels is going to naturally produce more yeast cells than a healthy individual. Diabetes has no correlation with the condition if the disease is properly managed. Women with poor immune systems are not going to produce enough good bacteria to control the yeast cells in the vagina.
Several lifestyle changes can be made to reduce your chances of getting a yeast infection. Wearing cotton underwear, quickly removing wet clothing, avoiding tight clothing and avoiding hot tubs are all great ways to keep your risk of yeast infections low.
While this condition can be extremely painful and uncomfortable, it can usually be treated and removed very quickly. Anti-fungal creams, suppositories, pills or ointments can be used to get the yeast levels in your body under control. This treatment should cure your problem within one week. Severe cases of yeast infection during pregnancy are much harder to treat. However, the professionals at South Lake OB/GYN in Clermont can help you make your yeast infection a distant memory. Contact us today to schedule your appointment to learn more.