How to treat or avoid vaginal yeast infections (Candida albicans)

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Candida albicans is a yeast species - a single-celled fungus that reproduces by budding - this is a normal part of the microbes that live in the gastrointestinal tract.

Small amounts of yeast are also living in various hot and humid throughout the body, including the mouth, rectum, vagina, and some parts of your skin. Their numbers are kept under control naturally by bacteria and other microorganisms that make their microbiome, the community of microorganisms that live in your body.

However, various factors can upset their microbial balance, tipping the balance in favor of C. albicans and allows the fungus to grow out of control and cause a fungal infection called candidiasis. These factors include:

Vaginal infection

Although the causes about 90 percent of yeast infection no more review, Candida albicans is not the only species of the genus Candida that lives in the body. Other common species include C. glabrata, C. parapsilosis, C. tropicalis, and C. krusei.

Some studies estimate that about 20 percent of women in good health have asymptomatic Candida lives in the vagina (although some estimates put the figure much higher, at 80 percent), according to a 2007 report in The Lancet. But C. albicans has 85 to 95 percent of Candida yeast strains isolated from the vagina, the report said. This is so as fungi in the vagina, anus.

An overgrowth of C. albicans (or other Candida species) in the vagina leading to a vaginal yeast infection, also known as Candida vaginitis Vulvovaginal candidiasis. Common symptoms include:

Itching and burning sensation in the vaginal area, including the lips and vulva
White discharge that is sometimes described as still resembles cottage cheese
Painful urination or sex
Redness and swelling of the vulva

Vaginal yeast infections are usually treated with antifungal creams or suppositories purchased over-the-counter or by prescription. Most fungal infections resolve in a few days of starting treatment.

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