A yeast infection can make your life a nightmare. Detecting it early enough will save you from experiencing its nasty side effects. It will also make it easier to treat it. And may also save you from the embarrassment of spreading it to your sexual partner. So, the question is, how do you know if you have a vaginal yeast infection?
You can know whether or not you have this type of vaginal infection in two ways:
- On your own, at home
- What does a yeast infection look like?
- How does a vaginal yeast infection feel like?
- You can go see a doctor who will then determine whether you have a candida infection depending on
- Your medical history
- Yeast infection tests – lab
- Vaginal exam
- Wet mount test
- KOH slide test
- Vaginal culture test
- Blood test
- Pap test
Let’s get deeper into these vaginal candida yeast infection tests.
How do you know you have a yeast infection at home?
1. How does the affected area look like?
If you have a vaginal yeast infection, the area around your vagina will swell. You might also see small bumps — a yeast infection rash. Due to the irritation that the candida yeast causes, the area might also redden.
Yeast infections cause an abnormal vaginal discharge. This discharge looks like cottage cheese. Therefore, if you notice that your vaginal area has a discharge that looks like cottage cheese, you likely have a vaginal yeast infection.
Want to see vaginal yeast infection pictures? See them here.
2. How does a yeast infection feel like?
When there is an overgrowth of candida in the vaginal area, the area will start itching. It is also common to have a burning sensation.
If you have sex when your have a yeast infection, you will likely experience pain. This pain during sex occurs simply because as the penis rubs against the already-sensitive area, it aggravates it, making the inflammation worse.
However, while self-diagnosing a yeast infection can give you correct results, it is not the most accurate way of knowing whether or not you have a vaginal yeast infection. This is because there are other sexually transmitted infections whose symptoms mimic those of a yeast infection. Self-diagnosis can therefore have disastrous consequences if you end up taking the wrong medication.
If you want yeast infection tests that are more accurate, you should visit a doctor.
How is a yeast infection diagnosed?
If you can’t tell whether you have a yeast infection or another vaginal infection such as bacterial vaginosis or chlamydia, you should go see a doctor.
A doctor is better-placed to tell you whether you have a yeast infection simply because they have a trained eye. They have seen a countless number of cases of candida yeast infections. And more importantly, they can carry out a number of vaginal yeast infection tests that can help confirm whether a yeast is to blame for your suffering or not.
3. Your medical history
When you visit a doctor, the first thing he or she will do is to take your medical history. Inquiries will be made on how you feel and how long you have been feeling the way you have been. Based on your history, they can be able to tell whether you are suffering from a vaginal yeast infection or not.
4. Vaginal exam
After explaining your symptoms, your doctor may want to rule out any other vaginal infections. In such a case, you may undergo a vaginal exam.
You will be asked to lay on your back, with your legs apart. A speculum will then be used to part the walls of the vagina so that the doctor can have a better view. An examination of both the vagina and the cervix will then follow with the doctor looking out for vaginal thrush bumps, signs of redness and any other of the visible yeast infection symptoms.
5. Wet mount test
In addition to the vaginal exam, the doctor may decide to further investigate the cause of your symptoms. He or she will use the speculum to collect any vaginal discharge in the vaginal area. The collected sample will then be mixed with a salt solution and then examined under a microscope.
6. KOH slide test
This is similar to a wet mount test, only that instead of using a salt solution, the health professional uses a potassium hydroxide solution. This solution kills other organisms in the collected sample and if there are yeast cells in the sample, they will be left behind. Depending on how much yeast is found in the sample, the doctor will be able to determine whether a candida vaginal yeast infection is to blame for your discomfort.
7. Vaginal culture test
With this test, the health professional collects the sample. He or she then adds it to a solution that helps promote yeast cell growth. If it grows at a rapid rate, then yeast cell overgrowth is likely the cause of the symptoms being experienced.
8. Blood tests
This is necessary in situations where one is suffering from recurring vaginal yeast infections. Since in most cases candida yeast infections keep coming back only when there is an underlying condition, a blood test is the perfect test as far as rooting out this condition is concerned. With a blood test, a doctor will be able to screen for HIV and other conditions such as diabetes.
Yeast infection tests conducted by a doctor are more accurate. They are more reliable.