A yeast infection is a common problem for ladies of all ages; the overgrowth of the candida fungus leaves the vagina red, sore, itchy, painful, and with unpleasant discharge. Many yeast infections are cleared up with over-the-counter remedies, but some ladies will need a visit to the doctor and prescription medication. A yeast infection is the second most common infection in the vagina, and chances are you’ve probably had one in your lifetime (1). Let’s talk about what you can do to reduce your risk.
Now that summer is here, it’s a good time to review how yeast infections occur. You may not know, but candida is naturally occurring and it’s perfectly normal to have a small amount in your vagina. Infection happens when the balance is thrown off and overgrowth occurs. Since candida thrives in warm, wet climates, these hot summer days make your vagina the perfect place to flourish. It’s important to make sure your vagina stays as dry as possible– this does not mean you can’t go swimming or lounge by the pool, but avoid staying in a wet bathing suit all day. And when you’re done working out or going for a run, change out of your workout shorts and put on something dry. And swap out those silky undies for something breathable like cotton or moisture-wicking material.
Diet can also play a role in yeast overgrowth and infection. Yeast feeds off sugar, so diets high in sugar and refined carbohydrates are giving candida exactly what it needs to grow. Even though it’s hot, limit your intake of soda, ice cream, and other sugary foods.
If you find that you have recurring yeast infections despite your efforts, it’s time to call our office. We can help!
(1) “Vaginal Candidiasis.” Center for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/candidiasis/genital/index.html