Vaginal fungus (vaginal fungus)
What is a vaginal fungus?
The vaginal fungus, also called vaginal fungus, is an infection of the mucous membrane of the female vagina. Often this is associated with a strong itching in the vagina; Even pain during intercourse are no rarity in this disease. Furthermore, painful urination can also occur.
In addition, the vagina is usually visibly reddened and swollen. This disease is also recognizable by changes in the mucous membrane - gray-white and crumbly deposits can often be observed. The vaginal fungus is a very common form of infectious disease in women: after all, three out of four women are affected by a vaginal fungus at least once in their lives.
Particularly common is vaginal fungus or vaginal fungus in pregnant women or in women who have diabetes. Even taking certain medications can lead to this symptom. Antibiotics belong to about these drugs, which favor a vaginal fungus. Likewise, taking birth control pills for the disease can also lead to vaginal thrush.
Especially in diabetes, the immune system of the vagina is weakened and fungi can spread unhindered. The pathogen is in most cases a yeast fungus, in most cases it is transmitted during sexual intercourse. But even a lack of hygiene can lead to vaginal fungus. On the other hand, however, too exaggerated hygiene can cause the infestation of vaginal thrush.
But other causes are conceivable. Thus, women who suffer from a generally weakened defense or stress are more susceptible to the vaginal thrush.
Symptoms, complaints & signs
Signs of the presence of a vaginal fungus are redness and itching around the vagina. The itching can occur or persist in contact with the genital organs. It is usually the first symptom. The redness is not necessarily present from the beginning and can only be found in the inner vaginal area. It can cause pain during intercourse or urination.
In most cases, the vaginal fungus is not seen directly as such. Whitish plaques that look like fungus are in fact rather rare on the labia. However, the vaginal fungus can often be seen as part of a gynecological examination.
The entire vaginal area may swell and burn due to vaginal mycosis. The inside of the vagina and the labia may be affected. The pain can vary greatly. The skin around the vagina can also be reddened and cracked. Sometimes there are visible blisters or a rash in the genital area.
These symptoms vary in intensity - depending on the other vaginal flora and the type of fungus. It comes in most cases to a whitish discharge, the consistency is creamy to friable. The smell in the genital area is described as unpleasant.
If left untreated, the vaginal fungus can spread further and further. As a complication of inadequately treated vaginal fungus, an infection of the uterus and bladder may occur. In general, the disease can become a chronic infection if it is not or not sufficiently long treated with the appropriate ointments or tablets. A typical complication of vaginal thrush is still the infection of the partner.
Unprotected traffic or inadequate hygiene, for example when using towels, may favor the fungus passing on from person to person. If the intimate partner does not follow suit consistently, the infection may first be threatened. If both partners do not treat their fungal infection adequately, there is a constant rekindling infection of both sufferers, as they repeatedly infect each other.
As a complication, this can sometimes cause the vaginal fungus to spread further and further in the body, severely weakening the immune system. It also threatens the complication that the fungus itself gradually becomes immune to the previously used active ingredients in ointments and creams. To prevent this, treatment should always be given early and, above all, for a sufficient period of time.
When should you go to the doctor?
An itching in the genital area and a slight swelling of the labia indicate a vaginal yeast infection. Gynecological advice is needed if the symptoms are affecting well-being and growing rapidly. If the symptoms do not decrease due to a sufficient intimate hygiene, the gynecologist is best consulted. Women who suffer from hormonal fluctuations or have a weakened immune system due to a disease are particularly at risk. Even people who take certain medications such as antibiotics or rheumatism remedy are among the risk groups and must go with the symptoms mentioned to the gynecologist.
In case of recurrent vaginal yeast infections, possible sources of infection must be identified and eliminated together with the physician. Other physicians who can be consulted are the internist or a gastroenterologist, depending on the symptom picture and the suspected cause. If the vaginal fungus is treated early, it should subside within a few days. For persistent symptoms, as well as any side effects and interactions caused by the prescribed antibiotics, it is best to inform the responsible physician so that the medication can be adjusted.
Treatment & Therapy
If the first signs of a vaginal fungus are visible, affected women should consult a gynecologist. This will make a so-called smear, which is examined in the laboratory. If a vaginal fungus has been diagnosed, appropriate treatment must be provided. With this, however, the symptoms usually disappear within three to four days.
The treatment is usually with so-called antifungals, these are drugs specifically against fungal diseases. Sheaths and ointments are also good for this condition. If the vaginal fungus first appears in a woman, it usually disappears with the appropriate treatment within a few days.
In order to prevent vagina fungus, one should pay attention to a sufficient hygiene in the genital area. The partner should also be stopped. However, one should not exaggerate it with the body hygiene and abstain from hot bath additives or creams if possible. Likewise, intimate sprays usually harm more than they help. Clear pH 7 water is best for cleaning the vagina.
Close-fitting clothing and fabrics made of synthetic fibers can also benefit a vaginal fungus - this should be avoided at best. Better is underwear made of cotton, silk or hemp. Also important is the choice of suitable bandages and panty liners. These should not be coated with plastic. Also, the toilet hygiene can be crucial; with this you should always wipe from the front to the back and never vice versa - so bacteria and fungi have little chance.
Those who have been affected several times by this disease should use a simple but effective trick: simply put a tampon soaked in natural yoghurt overnight into the vagina. This restores the natural protective mechanism of the vagina.
After the successful treatment of a vaginal fungus, it's all about avoiding the recurrence. In the field of aftercare, therefore, numerous measures are necessary to prevent a renewed infestation of vaginal fungus. This of course includes a regular and gentle intimate hygiene, as well as the wearing of clean underwear made of natural fibers.
In addition, it is advisable to abstain from antiseptic bath products as well as soaps and intimate sprays with perfume. Thus, the natural balance of the vaginal flora is spared and remains immune. For extremely dry vaginal skin, it is advisable to use a specific lubricant during sexual intercourse.
Again, attention should be paid to the most natural possible composition. If vaginal yeast infections occur more frequently, the partner should also be treated and subsequently take preventive measures. After the bowel movement always pay attention to a cleaning backwards, so in the direction of the back. It is important that germs from the intestine do not enter the vagina.
Furthermore, the consumption of sweets should be limited and to pay attention to a healthy, balanced and also fiber-rich diet. In diabetic women, the sugar level should be well adjusted and checked regularly. For recurring symptoms that could indicate a vaginal fungus, a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible. Although a recurring vaginal fungus is usually harmless, however, a quickly scheduled therapy can prevent the spread of a new vaginal fungus and thus prevent burdensome relapses.
You can do that yourself
The vaginal or vaginal fungus is an unpleasant illness, which is good to relieve with self-help. Not infrequently, this can even make the doctor's visit and the associated treatment even 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 fungus has become a recurrent phenomenon.
Since the vaginal fungus is often triggered by antibiotics, it is helpful in the context of self-help to take this only if they are actually necessary. In case of doubt, consultation with the attending physician is always advisable.
Furthermore itching often aggravates the condition enormously and leads to swelling or redness. Relief can form here tampons, which were soaked with natural yoghurt. This has two advantages: Firstly, the yoghurt cools the irritated tissue, and secondly, yoghurt helps to restore the natural flora of the vagina. The milieu is being rebalanced, which is the first step in combating the fungal infection. This measure is supported by a gentle cleaning with lukewarm water, which does not irritate the vagina additionally. The underwear should be made of cotton and not made of synthetic fibers to promote sweating and thus mushroom reproduction. The underwear is best washed at 60 degrees or more.