GET YEAST INFECTION ANSWERS

What is a vaginal yeast infection (VYI)?

A vaginal yeast infection is a very common infection caused by yeast called Candida albicans. Normally, Candida organisms live harmlessly in your stomach. In one in five women, they also live in the vagina. They usually coexist quite happily with other normal organisms in your body, kept in check by your immune system and “good” bacteria.

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Do I have a vaginal yeast infection?

You may experience itching, burning, and a thick, white vaginal discharge that might resemble cottage cheese. You may also notice redness or experience vulvar pain. If this is your first yeast infection, do not try to diagnose or treat it yourself. The only way to know for sure is to see your doctor. It might be another kind of vaginal condition, and more than one infection can occur at the same time.

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What causes a vaginal yeast infection?

Yeast – a strain called Candida albicans in particular – is a tiny organism that can be found on your skin, and inside the vagina, in small numbers. Your vaginal environment is naturally acidic, which helps to keep yeast from growing, but if the pH of the internal vaginal environment becomes less acidic, a rise in yeast proliferation may result, which can cause a vaginal infection.

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When should I seek help?

Since the symptoms of yeast infections can be similar to those of more serious conditions, seeing your family doctor or gynaecologist is important, especially if this is your first yeast infection.

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