Can you have a yeast infection without symptoms? This is one of the most popular questions that medical practitioners receive. Here are 5 things that will help answer your question
#1. It is normal for yeast cells to occur in the vagina
A healthy vagina has a number of healthy bacteria, fungi and other organisms. Some of these organisms are potentially harmful. Others are useful and help to keep the vaginal area infection – free. This is one of the main reasons why douching is discouraged by doctors.
According to WebMD, yeast cells naturally exist in the vaginal area. This is even in healthy women.
#2. For as long as the yeast cells exist in small numbers, the yeast will not cause any symptoms
Even healthy women have yeast. They have it without experiencing symptoms like itching, painful sex, burning sensation and any other signs of a candida infection. And for as long as the yeast population is kept in check, no yeast infection symptoms will surface. These women won’t experience vaginal thrush discomfort.
#3. The yeast can overgrow
When there is a healthy balance in the vagina, the yeast population will remain at a low level. The yeast therefore won’t cause any symptoms. It will exist in harmony with other micro-flora that exist in the vagina.
However, poor lifestyle choices like douching can cause an imbalance. Taking antibiotics will kill useful bacteria in the vagina, causing an imbalance. Also, conditions like pregnancy and diabetes can create a yeast-conducive environment — they increase the sugar levels in cells that line the vagina walls. This then causes the candida yeast to multiply at a faster rate. The yeast ends up overgrowing.
#4. It is only when there is an overgrowth that symptoms of yeast infections show up
For as long as there is a healthy balance in the vagina and the yeast population is in check, you won’t experience any symptoms of yeast infections.
However, when yeast overruns the vaginal area, it causes irritation. This then causes itching. You may also experience a burning sensation. The yeast overgrowth will also cause your vagina to produce an abnormal discharge that looks like cottage cheese. These and more vaginal yeast infection symptoms will start to manifest as soon as the candida yeast population grows to such an extent that your body cannot handle.
#5. You can prevent yeast infection symptoms from occurring
Since yeast only causes symptoms when there is an overgrowth, anything that you can do to prevent this overgrowth will keep the symptoms at bay. To protect yourself from yeast-caused discomfort, you have to do the following:
- Take a balanced diet
- Avoid overusing antibiotics
- Don’t wear scented underwear or pads
- Avoid douching
- Include probiotics in your diet
- Stay stress-free since stress can alter your overall hormonal levels
- Manage your blood sugar level — if you have diabetes
- Use protection during sex — sexual intercourse is one of the ways through which you can get a candida yeast infection
- Avoid tight clothing and opt for clothing that allows your skin to breath
If you already have a vaginal yeast infection, doing the above will help the infection to clear up faster. However, you may need to use antifungal medication to completely get rid of the candida yeast infection. These medications may be oral or topical. Use them as per the instructions of your doctor and candida yeast infections will be a thing of the past.