Thrush is a common yeast infection that affects men and women. It’s usually harmless but it can be uncomfortable & keep coming back. It isn’t a sexually transmitted infection (STI).
It can be triggered by sex and sometimes passed on through – vaginal, oral or anal sex, during foreplay or by sharing sex toys.
Thrush is caused by a fungus called candida that is normally harmless.
Thrush tends to grow in warm, moist conditions and develops if the balance of bacteria in the body changes.
SPECIES OF TRUSH INFECTION
- Candida glabrata,
- Candida guilliermondii ,
- Candida parapsilosis
- Candida tropicalis.
- Candida Albican
These yeasts are naturally found in the mouth and vagina but in controlled populations. It is not considered as part of the natural skin microbes (normal skin flora) but does colonize the skin surface every now and then.
TRUSH INFECTION TRIGGERS
below are some conditions that can trigger give rise to trush infection :
- Wearing tight clothing – which prevent natural ventilation.
- Taking antibiotics – about 30 % of women will have thrush because of this.
- Using products that irritate the vagina, such as vaginal douches or bubble bath.
- Undergoing chemotherapy.
- use of sanitary towels – tampons is a risk factor for developing thrush.
- your skin is irritated or damaged
- you have poorly controlled diabetes
- you have a weakened immune system, due to HIV or other diseases.
- Excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis).
- Endocrine diseases including Cushing syndrome and hypoparathyroidism.
- Nutritional deficiencies including vitamins B1, B2, B6 and C.
SYMPTOMS OF TRUSH INFECTION IN WOMEN
Below are the basic symptoms of trush infection
- Vulval itching, soreness and irritation.
- Redness of the vagina and vulva.
- Vaginal discharge, often white (like cottage cheese) which this can be thick or thin but is usually odourless.
- Pain or discomfort during sex.
- Pain when passing urine.
SYMPTOMS OF TRUSH INFECTION IN MEN
Thrush symptoms may be less noticeable for men, but include:
- Discomfort, burning or itching at the tip of the penis or under the foreskin.
- Redness or red patches on the penis or under the foreskin.
- A thick or thin discharge, like cottage cheese, under the foreskin.
- Discomfort when passing urine.
- An unpleasant Smell &
difficulty pulling back the foreskin .
SITE OF OCCURENCE
covered areas that tend to sweat are more prone.
- The groin region (between genitalia & around the anus)
- The feet,
- The armpit,
- under the breast in women
- In between fingers & palm
- The buttock region in babies (diaper dermatitis) are more common sites.
NOTE : Skin candidiasis can affect any person of any age but it often tends to be common in newborns and the elderly. It is also more commonly associated with immuno-compromised individuals & with antibiotic use.
TREATMENT OF TRUSH INFECTION
Antifungal cream can be used in addition to pessary or tablet
treatment if there is localised redness and soreness around the vagina and vulva.
Some Tropical creams used are as follows :
They can be extremely effective, and one tablet taken once may be enough to cure an episode of thrush.
Tablet antifungal treatment typically are :
- fluconazole (eg Canesten oral Diflucan )
Occasionally they cause side-effects such as :
- constipation & bloating.
Pregnant or breastfeeding women are not usually prescribed tablet antifungal
treatments because of the theoretical chance they may affect the baby.
These are tablets inserted inside the vagina.
Intravaginal pessaries do not cause as many side-effects as tablet treatments, but they can be awkward and messy to use, can cause local irritation, and can damage latex condoms and diaphragms.
The medicines such as ;
- clotrimazole (eg Canesten),
- econazole (eg Gyno-Pevaryl )
- miconazole ( Gyno-Daktarin ) come in pessary form.
Its important to observe personal HYGIENE when treating trush infection to prevent re – occurence and to help reduce discomfort.
- Use water and EMOLLIENT (instead of soap), like E45 cream, to wash your penis OR vagina.
- Dry the affected area properly after washing.
- Wear cotton underwear.
- Avoid sex until thrush has cleared up.
- Use a condom to help stop it spreading.
- Take showers instead of baths
- Women who suspect they may have a vaginal infection should visit their doctor.
- If possible, women should abstain from vaginal intercourse for at least 24 hours prior to the visit as the presence of semen, lubricants or spermicides can make the diagnosis of a vaginal infection more difficult.
- Women should also avoid douching, using a tampon or vaginal medications (e.g., thrush medication) prior to the visit.
- If a woman decides to self-medicate for a condition and symptoms persist or recur, it is important to visit the doctor. The condition may be something else, such as bacterial vaginosis, dermatitis, lichen sclerosis or genital herpes; these conditions are caused by different organisms and require specific treatment.
It is important to speak to your
doctor or pharmacist regarding treatment if you are pregnant and/or breastfeeding.
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