Thrush Is Not Sexually Transmitted
Vaginal thrush is not a sexually transmitted infection . Its caused by an overgrowth of the yeast Candida albicans, which is normally found on the genital skin. This overgrowth may occur due to:
- recent antibiotic use
- general illnesses like diabetes, iron deficiency and immune system disorders
- associated vulval skin conditions, such as eczema.
Sometimes, the reason for candida overgrowth cant be identified.
Is Candida Albicans An Std
Candida albicans is not a sexually transmitted disease or infection. Candida is a yeast that naturally lives in your body and can overgrow if the balance of yeast and healthy bacteria in your body changes. The balance of yeast could change as a result of sexual activity but having sex does not cause infection.
How Are Vaginal Yeast Infections Diagnosed
Yeast infections are simple to diagnose. Your doctor will ask about your medical history. This includes whether youve had yeast infections before. They may also ask if youve ever had an STI.
The next step is a pelvic exam. Your doctor will examine your vaginal walls and cervix. Theyll also look at the surrounding area for external signs of infection.
Each yeast infection is different, so your doctor will suggest a treatment thats best for you. Treatments are generally determined based on the severity of your symptoms.
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What Is A Vaginal Yeast Infection
A vaginal yeast infection, also known as candidiasis, is a common condition. A contains bacteria and some yeast cells. But when the balance of bacteria and yeast changes, the yeast cells can multiply. This causes itching, swelling, and irritation.
Treating a vaginal yeast infection can relieve symptoms within a few days . In more severe cases, it may take longer.
Vaginal yeast infections arent considered a sexually transmitted infection , commonly known as sexually transmitted disease . Sexual contact can spread it, but women who arent sexually active can also get them.
A specific kind of yeast called Candida albicans causes most yeast infections. These infections are easily treatable.
If youre having recurring yeast infections or problems getting rid of a yeast infection with conventional treatment, a different version of Candida might be the cause. A lab test can identify what type of Candida you have.
Yeast Infection And Periods
Having both a yeast infection and your period can feel like a double whammy. However, this isnt uncommon. Yeast infections are most likely to occur in women during the final days leading up to their period.
If you experience white to yellow discharge in the week before your period, this isnt automatically a yeast infection unless you have other hallmark symptoms, too, such as redness, burning, and itchiness.
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Can You Get It From Kissing
You can transmit Candida fungus to a partner through kissing. But that doesnt mean that theyll develop thrush as a result.
Thrush happens when risk factors, like taking antibiotics or having a suppressed immune system, throw off your bodys natural balance of Candida albicans flora. So while kissing a person with thrush might contribute to having more Candida to deal with, it wont necessarily infect you. Remember that our bodies naturally have Candida.
How Can I Prevent Yeast Infections
Your doc may also recommend making some lifestyle changes to prevent another yeast infection from occurring in the future, such as:
Probiotics have also been shown to help maintain vaginal pH, Shepherd says: “That’s a great way for people to take an active role in helping their health.” And, it’s possible that your yeast infection could be linked to eating certain foods, like sugary or starchy foods.
“Being body aware and then making adjustments to what those are can decrease the chance of having a yeast infection,” she explains.
Also, while yeast infections are common, if you get them all the time , let your doc know. There are other, more effective treatment options and medications that will help in the long term, Shepherd says.
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Things You Should Know About Yeast Infections
June 20, 2018 By IEWC
These infections are caused by a fungus that is naturally present in your body. When that fungus level rises, which can happen due to increased estrogen levels, the us of antibiotics, or pregnancy, it can lead to an infection.
Symptoms of a yeast infection can be a white discharge, sometimes cottage cheese-like, vulvo-vaginal itching, and/or burning. Other symptoms can include a burning when you pee or pain during sex, all of which should point you straight to a doc to get checked out.
Three out of four women get a yeast infection in their lifetime, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. But still, theres a lot of confusion about this pesky problem. Monistat, the popular over-the-counter remedy for yeast infections, commissioned a study on some of the myths surrounding yeast infections, asking 1,000 women between the ages of 16 and 24 what they know about yeast infections.
Turns out a lot of them have no idea what to do when they feel like they have a yeast infection because they feel stigmatized by them. Of those surveyed who experienced yeast infections, 37 percent said it made them feel like they did something wrong, 42 percent reported feeling self-conscious and 55 percent said they were afraid of being negatively judged by others and that it made them feel dirty.
Yeast Infections Myth Vs. The Truth
MYTH: 81 percent of respondents thought having sex was a primary cause of yeast infections.
Hiv And Vaginal Yeast Infections
Though yeast infections aren’t typically associated with STDs, they do have a well-known connection to HIV/AIDS, an STD that is often spread through sexual activity. HIV/AIDS can also be transmitted through direct contact of bodily fluids with an open wound or a tear in the skin and dirty needles.
HIV is a known risk factor for yeast infections it suppresses the immune system, allowing opportunistic infections to take root. Some studies suggest that about 50 to 70 percent of women with HIV develop vaginal yeast infections at some point in their lives.
Research also suggests that the connection works the other way around: vaginal yeast infections increase a woman’s risk of getting HIV.
In a study published in the Journal of Women’s Health, researchers looked at women who were not HIV positive but who were in a sexual relationship with someone who was.
They found that the women who eventually contracted HIV were significantly more likely to have had yeast infections.
They concluded that women in high-risk relationships should receive regular gynecological evaluation and be taught how to prevent yeast infections and to treat them quickly when they do occur to decrease their risk of HIV infection.
Since yeast infections can irritate the vaginal lining even if you haven’t been scratching, it’s a good idea to use condoms if you plan to be sexually active while you have a yeast infection and don’t know the HIV status of your partner.
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How Is Candida Albicans Diagnosed
A visual examination of the affected area helps diagnose Candida, specifically if it is in your mouth or genital region. Your healthcare provider will ask you questions about your symptoms, especially duration and severity. They will also test the infection to identify exactly what it is so they can offer a comprehensive treatment plan.
About Oral Thrush In Adults
Oral thrush is a fungal infection of the mouth. It is not contagious and is usually successfully treated with antifungal medication.
It is also called oral candidosis because it is caused by a group of yeasts called Candida.
Symptoms of oral thrush can include:
- white patches in the mouth that can often be wiped off, leaving behind red areas that may bleed slightly
- loss of taste or an unpleasant taste in the mouth
- redness inside the mouth and throat
- cracks at the corners of the mouth
- a painful, burning sensation in the mouth
In some cases, the symptoms of oral thrush can make eating and drinking difficult.
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Management Of Recurrent Thrush
If you experience repeated episodes of thrush, its recommended that you see your GP to confirm that its thrush and that you dont have an STI. Your GP can check for the presence of other skin conditions that may have similar symptoms and exclude other conditions that can cause thrush .
Any factor contributing to the overgrowth of Candida albicans should be identified and managed. If no contributing factors are found, a course of preventative treatment may be recommended.
There is no evidence to support the treatment of male partners of women who experience thrush. Thrush outbreaks, while uncomfortable, do not cause any long-term health issues. There is also no clear evidence that dietary changes prevent thrush, but the research is limited.
Can I Get A Yeast Infection From Breastfeeding
Yes. Yeast infections can happen on your nipples or in your breast from breastfeeding. Yeast thrive on milk and moisture. A yeast infection you get while breastfeeding is different from a vaginal yeast infection. However, it is caused by an overgrowth of the same fungus.
Symptoms of thrush during breastfeeding include:
- Sore nipples that last more than a few days, especially after several weeks of pain-free breastfeeding
- Flaky, shiny, itchy, or cracked nipples
- Deep pink and blistered nipples
- Shooting pain in the breast during or after feedings
If you have any of these signs or symptoms or think your baby might have thrush in his or her mouth, call your doctor. Learn more about thrush in our Breastfeeding section.
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How To Prevent A Vaginal Yeast Infection
- Avoid douches, vaginal deodorant lotions and sprays, and scented soaps.
- Dry off and change into dry clothes as soon as possible after a swim or work out.
- Limit how much sugar and processed foods you eat.
- If you are susceptible to getting a yeast infection after intercourse, a dose of Diflucan before intercourse may be recommended.
- If you are susceptible to getting a yeast infection after taking antibiotics, a dose of Diflucan at the start and end of antibiotic therapy can prevent a post-antibiotic yeast infection.
- Wear cotton underwear.
Ruling Out Other Vaginal Conditions
A few other vaginal conditions result in symptoms that are like those of thrush. See your doctor if you:
- have had several episodes of thrush in a short period
- have had recent sex without a condom with a new partner
- have associated pain in your pelvic area or abnormal bleeding
- treated yourself with a thrush treatment and your symptoms havent gone away.
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When To See Your Doctor
If this is your first time having a yeast infection, see your doctor and get an official diagnosis. Yeast infections can have similar symptoms to other vaginal infections.
Your doctor may recommend an antifungal medication, such as miconazole , butoconazole , or terconazole . Many of these creams can be used to treat vaginal or penile yeast infections.
Sex May Delay Healing
Engaging in sexual activity during a yeast infection can also disrupt your healing process. And if it aggravates your symptoms, it may take longer for you to heal.
If your partner develops a yeast infection after engaging in sexual activity with you, they may pass it back to you during your next sexual encounter. Abstaining until youve both successfully healed is the only way to prevent this cycle from continuing.
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Does Yogurt Prevent Or Treat Yeast Infections
Maybe. Studies suggest that eating eight ounces of yogurt with “live cultures” daily or taking Lactobacillus acidophilus capsules can help prevent infection.4,5
But, more research still needs to be done to say for sure if yogurt with Lactobacillus or other probiotics can prevent or treat vaginal yeast infections. If you think you have a yeast infection, see your doctor or nurse to make sure before taking any over-the-counter medicine.
Symptoms Of Vaginal Yeast Infections
Itchiness and discomfort are the main symptoms of a yeast infection, but there are others. You may also experience any or all of the following:
- Pain or burning when you pee
- Pain during sex
- A thick, white, odorless discharge, similar to cottage cheese
If you think you have a yeast infection, see your doctor before treating yourself. The symptoms of yeast infections are similar to other, more serious conditions, including sexually transmitted infections and bacterial vaginosis . An accurate diagnosis is important so you can get the best treatment.
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What Are Common Types Of Vaginal Issues
There are different types of vaginal problems that can arise throughout a womans life. Some vaginal diseases, like vaginal sexually transmitted diseases, can be more severe in terms of symptoms than other vaginal problems, like yeast infections. You may wonder are yeast infections contagious? Keep reading to learn more about each of the common vaginal diseases and infections below.
How Long Should You Wait After Treatment
Having sex while undergoing treatment for a yeast infection may slow down the healing process.
Also, if a persons partner develops a yeast infection, it is possible that the infection will get passed back and forth. A person should generally avoid sexual activity until all the symptoms clear up.
Yeast infections usually clear relatively rapidly once a person begins treatment. Many over-the-counter treatment options require up to
- swelling of the labia
- white, clumpy discharge
When left untreated, the symptoms will typically get worse. However, some mild yeast infections may get better without treatment.
People can often treat a yeast infection at home using OTC remedies. These treatments usually contain one of the following ingredients:
When a person develops a yeast infection for the first time, they should see a doctor to ensure they receive the correct diagnosis and treatment.
People should also seek medical advice if OTC treatments are not effective. A doctor may recommend alternative treatments, including oral medication.
Finally, a person should seek medical attention if they:
- have four or more yeast infections in a year
- Bitew, A., & Abebaw, Y. . Vulvovaginal candidiasis: Species distribution of Candida and their antifungal susceptibility pattern. BMC Women’s Health, 18, 94
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What Causes Oral Thrush
Low numbers of the fungus Candida are naturally found in the mouth and digestive system of most people. They don’t usually cause any problems, but can lead to oral thrush if they multiply.
There are a number of reasons why this may happen, including:
- taking a course of antibiotics, particularly over a long period or at a high dose
- wearing dentures , particularly if they don’t fit properly
- having poor oral hygiene
- having a dry mouth, either because of a medical condition or a medication you are taking
- having chemotherapy or radiotherapy to treat cancer
Babies, young children and elderly people are at a particularly high risk of developing oral thrush, as are people with certain underlying conditions, including diabetes, an iron deficiency or vitamin B12 deficiency, an underactive thyroid and HIV.
As most people already have Candida fungi living in their mouth, oral thrush is not contagious. This means it cannot be passed to others.
What Is The Treatment For A Vaginal Yeast Infection
A doctor will recommend a treatment that will be ideal specifically for you. The type of treatment will be based on how severe your symptoms are.
Simple infections A doctor usually gives instructions for a 1-3 day treatment plan of an antifungal tablet, ointment, cream, or suppository. The medications can either be in over-the-counter or prescription form.
Some common medications are:
- Have a weakened immune system due to medication or uncontrolled diabetes
Some possible medication or treatment for complicated cases of yeast infections are:
- Long-term use of fluconazole once per week for six weeks
- Prolonged use of topical antifungal medication
- 14-day tablet, ointment, or cream, or suppository
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Can A Yeast Infection Be Prevented
You can prevent some yeast infections by doing these things:
- Use good oral hygiene to help prevent yeast infection in your mouth . This includes brushing and flossing your teeth every day and using mouthwash as needed.
- Wear cotton underwear to help to prevent a vaginal or genital yeast infection. If you are a woman and get vaginal yeast infections often, you may want to take probiotics.
- Keep areas where skin rubs up against skin dry and try to reduce friction.
How Can I Prevent Candida Albicans
You can prevent an overgrowth of Candida albicans by:
- Maintaining good oral and physical hygiene.
- Eating a well-balanced diet.
- Managing your stress.
- Keeping blood sugar levels controlled if you are diabetic.
If you take antibiotics or medications that may cause an overgrowth of Candida, talk with your healthcare provider about ways to treat the possibility of a yeast infection as a side effect or an underlying health condition.
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How To Prevent Spreading A Yeast Infection
People who have yeast infections can take several steps to avoid spreading a potential infection to their partner. These strategies include:
- Avoiding sex until your yeast infection heals
- Showering before and after sex
- Not sharing unlaundered underwear or unwashed sex toys
In general, the best way to avoid a yeast infection is to maintain a healthy lifestyle for your skin with these suggestions:
- Avoid eating too many sugary foods, as sugar feeds yeast
- Shower and brush your teeth regularly
- Wear clean, loose, cotton underwear
- Drink plenty of water to avoid a dry mouth
- Use unscented soaps and water to wash your genitals
- Avoid sitting for too long in a swimsuit, jockstrap, or tight bicycle shorts. These clothing items trap heat, sweat, and moisture, all of which can encourage Candida to grow on your skin.
- If prescribed an antibiotic, eat foods rich in probiotics to balance the bacteria in your body