Thrush (vaginal) is caused by a yeast infection caused by the naturally occurring vaginal fungus called Candida albicans. It is extremely common (75% of women will have it at some pint) and usually nothing to worry about.
Overgrowth of Candida albicans (causing the thrush symptoms) occurs when the acidity level on the surface of the vagina is altered, this shifts the balance of the various bacteria that normal live in this area. This change allows fungus to grow causing the symptoms.
Vaginal thrush also referred to as female candidiasis is very common. It's mostly harmless, and often asymptomatic. Common reported symptoms include:
Thrush can also affect men. Genital thrush is much rarer in men than women. Due to the rarity of this condition in men, it is recommended to test for underlying conditions known to make one prone to candida infection such as diabetes mellitus.
Unlike genital thrush, can affect men, women and babies.
The main symptoms are the white spots around the inside of the mouth.
Underwear or clothing of a certain synthetic material can cause thrush if your skin is particularly sensitive and some women find changing to cotton can make a huge difference.
Toiletries; sometimes altering the skin care products, shower gel, deodorant and other perfumed products used can be the catalyst in reducing the chance of getting thrush.
Whilst thrush is not classed as a sexually transmitted infection, it can still be passed on from sex. It is advised therefore, to avoid sex until the infection is completely cleared. If you have symptoms associated with thrush (see below) and are worried it could be an STI instead, visit your GP or sexual health clinic for further information and testing.
The causes of thrush in men can also be similar to that in women, although it is more likely to be linked to conditions such as diabetes, HIV, chemotherapy and personal hygiene.
Thrush can often be asymptomatic.
Known symptoms of thrush include:
Identify any triggers that may be causing thrush in you such as:
General personal hygiene techniques, washing and wiping.
Processed and sugary food are associated with thrush symptoms. Reduce the intake of such products. Foods considered beneficial are listed below:
Over the counter (OTC) thrush treatment creams are often recommended with pessaries and tablets to alleviate the symptoms. The most popular treatment option is Canesten.
There are two clinically proven treatments for thrush. AccessDoctor offer both of these treatments.
Both the capsule and the cream are known to be equally effective treatment. Either or both together can be used depending on your preference and previous experience.
For more information on thrush, you can refer to the NHS website, the link is provided below.
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