Vaginitis is a disorder in women's vaginal area associated with irritation and/or inflammation of the vagina. Vaginitis is a very common condition affecting millions of women each year. There are three main types of vaginal infections:
- candida vaginitis (yeast infection)
- trichomonas vaginitis ("trich")
- bacterial vaginosis (BV).
Yeast Infection is also called candidiasis. This type of vaginitis is caused by a fungus and is the second most common type of the disorder.
Protozoan is a type of infection that is also known as trichomoniasis and it is considered a sexually transmitted disease (STD). This type is the least common and comprises 3% to 5% of all vaginitis infections.
The bacterial type of infection is caused when healthy vaginal organisms are replaced by bacteria. It is considered to be the most common type of vaginitis.
Possible Symptoms of Vaginitis
Infections in vagina may cause a variety of symptoms, such as fishy odor, irritation, abnormal or increased discharge, painful urination, vaginal bleeding and itching, Women suffering from this condition, may have one or more of the symptoms mentioned above. If you suspect you have this condition, you should discuss it with your physician so that you can be tested.
Causes of Vaginitis
Vaginitis has more than one cause. Common vaginitis causes are;
- fungal infection,
- protozoan infection,
- bacterial infections,
- contact dermatitis,
- allergic reactions
Millions of women are suffering from vaginitis and this condition alone is a main reason why women visit their physician.
How to Treat Vaginitis
There are some treatment options available for curing vaginitis or giving bacterial vaginosis relief, but which treatment your physician will go for will depend on the cause of the infection:
- Trichomonas infection is commonly treated with a prescribed oral antibiotic.
- Yeast infections are treated orally or intra-vaginally with either prescription or over-the-counter antifungal medications.
- BV infections are in most cases treated orally or intra-vaginally with prescribed medication.
How to Prevent Vaginitis
- Douching should be avoided as well as irritating agents, such as feminine hygiene sprays and harsh soaps. If you use douches you run the risk of disrupting the normal balance of vaginal bacteria and should therefore be avoided.
- You should wipe front to back after going to the bathroom, thus prevent to spread bacteria from the rectum to the vagina.
- You should practice safe sex or abstinence if possible. Also avoid multiple sexual partners. If you use latex condoms consistently and in the right way, you can reduce the risk of transmission of STDs.
- Don't use clothing that can trap moisture, for example panty hose without a cotton crotch, tight jeans etc.
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