What Every Woman Should Know

Yeast-Infection-Dans-Wellness-Newsletter-January-2016Genital/vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) is often called a “yeast infection.”  It occurs when there is overgrowth of the normal yeast in the vagina.  Nearly 75% of all adult women have had at least one yeast infection.  VVC occurs more frequently and more severely in people with weakened immune systems.  Other conditions that may put a woman at risk for a yeast infection include pregnancy, diabetes, long-term use of broad-spectrum antibiotics and use of corticosteroid medications.

Wearing cotton underwear may help reduce the risk of developing a yeast infection.  Several antifungal medications are available to treat yeast infections.  Vaginal suppositories or creams are commonly used.  The duration of treatment can range from one to seven days.  Mild or moderate infections can sometimes be treated with a single dose of oral antifungal medication.  These types of medications usually have an 80 to 90% success rate, but some people may have recurrent or resistant infections.

Over-the-counter treatments are available.  As a result, more women are diagnosing and treating themselves.  However, it is important to see your healthcare provider to be sure of the diagnosis before treating a yeast infection with over-the-counter medications.  Overuse of these medications can increase the chance that they will eventually not work because the yeast can become resistant to treatment.

–Source:  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention