Vaginitis has been described as few conditions that can lead to inflammation or infection of your vagina. Vulvovaginitis is about inflammation of both your vulva and vagina. Your vulva is an external part of the genitals. Read on to know about what causes different kinds of vaginal infections and what you can do for it.
What to check for a vaginal infection
Some vaginal infections might not produce any symptoms and when you develop symptoms, the common ones include:
- vaginal itching
- change in the amount ofdischarge from your vagina
- change in thecolor of your vaginal discharge
- burning or pain during urination
- pain at the time of intercourse
- spotting or vaginal bleeding
Symptoms of vaginal infections will differ based on the exact cause of your infection:
- Bacterial infectionsgenerally lead to yellow or grayish-white discharge. The discharge will have a fish-like odor that can be noticed easily after having intercourse.
- Yeast infectionsusually produce itching. When there is charge, it will be thick and white that appears in the form of cottage cheese.
- Trichomoniasisis a condition that may lead to odor and vaginal. The discharge from this infection is usually greenish-yellow and might be frothy.
Vaginal infections are not at all life-threatening conditions. However, you need to schedule an appointment for visiting your private gynaecologist in London at Medical Express Clinic when you:
- have never had a vaginal infection in the past
- believe you might getpregnant
- have had a vaginal infection but are facing newer symptoms
- have had many or new sexual partners
- have symptoms that will return after the treatment
If you are suffering from vaginal irritation and have recently been diagnosed with yeast infections earlier, then you might not want to see your doctor.
Yeast infections are now treated at home by taking over-the-counter vaginal antifungal medications. However, if you do not know about yeast infection, then it is a wise decision to check with your doctor.
What leads to vaginal infections?
Vaginal infections might have different causes and in case you develop vaginal infection, your doctor will at first diagnose and then treat your infection depending on the cause.
Common causes of vaginal infections are the following:
- Bacterial infections –Certain bacteria can be found in your vagina. An overgrowth of these bacteria may lead to bacterial vaginosis.
- Yeast infections –Yeast infections generally occur due to a fungus known as Candida albicans. With antibiotics, you can lessen the number of antifungal bacteria in the vagina. This reduction will cause an overgrowth of fungi and thus, lead to an infection.
- Trichomoniasis – This vaginal infection usually takes place by a protozoan parasite that might get contracted due to sexual intercourse.
- Vaginal atrophy –This condition generally occurs after menopause that develop when the level of estrogen decline at the time of breastfeeding. Reduced hormone levels may be the reason for dryness and vaginal thinning and dryness which can cause vaginal inflammation.
- Irritants –Body washes, perfumes, soaps and vaginal contraceptives can cause irritation to the vagina thus, leading to inflammation. Tight-fitting clothes can be the reason for heat rashes that will irritate your vagina.
There are cases when your doctor won’t be able to know the exact cause of vaginal infection which is called non-specific vulvovaginitis. It may take place in women of any age group but very common in young girls that have not entered the stage of puberty.
How vaginal infections can be diagnosed
In order to diagnose a vaginal infection, your doctor will ask about your health history. They will ask about your sexual health such as your present number of sex partners and your past history of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and vaginal infections.
Your doctor will ask to perform a pelvic examination and collect a sample of vaginal discharge. He will then send this sample to the laboratory for further analysis. This will enable the doctor to know what is causing your infection.
How vaginal infections can be treated
The treatment for vaginal infections will depend on what is actually causing the infection. For example:
- Metronidazolegel, tablets, cream or clindamycin gel or cream might be suggested in case of bacterial infection.
- Antifungal creams or suppositories might be prescribed for a yeast infection.
- Trinidazole or metronidazole tablets may be prescribed for trichomoniasis.
- Estrogen tablets or creams are prescribed for vaginal atrophy.
If your infection has occurred due to an irritant such as soap, then your doctor will suggest different product to lessen the irritation.
How you can avoid vaginal infections
All vaginal infections cannot be avoided and so, it is advised to use a condom at the time of intercourse to present spreading different STIs. It will also lessen the risk of contracting them.
Proper hygiene can prevent some kind of vaginal infections.
If possible, wear cotton underwear and pantyhose that have cotton crotch. This can further lessen the risk of developing irritation and vaginal inflammation. Some women might suffer from irritation and inflammation due to choosing fabrics that make it difficult to breathe properly.
About the perception when you develop an infection
The treatment for vaginal infections is extremely effective and by conducting thorough diagnoses, you will get the right treatment.
If you develop any concerning or new symptoms, then you should speak with a private gynaecologist in London to ensure you get the right treatment on time.