If you are one of many women who suffer from chronic or recurring yeast infections, you may find yourself wondering if you will ever get any relief from all of the itching, burning, and discomfort that you seem to feel the majority of the time. While chronic yeast infections are most definitely not the norm, it is not as rare as you would think either. Get to know some of the treatment options available to you through gynecology to try to get your yeast infections under control and get you feeling healthier and more comfortable as soon as possible.
Go To Your Gynecologist For Tests
When a woman has suffered from a yeast infection previously, she may immediately jump to the conclusion that she is suffering from a vaginal yeast infection based on the symptoms she feels. However, the commonly noticed symptoms of yeast infections, which include itching, excess vaginal discharge, and burning can also be signs of other types of vaginal infections.
Bacterial vaginosis is a condition in which the bacteria in the vagina grow more than they should and can cause the same basic symptoms as a yeast infection. However, because a yeast infection is a fungal rather than a bacterial infection, the treatment for a yeast infection would be ineffective against a bacterial infection.
A simple test at the gynecologist's office can tell you which type of infection you have so that you can be sure that you are getting the right treatment for your symptoms. Additionally, while yeast infections can be treated with over-the-counter anti-fungal medications, bacterial vaginosis is treated through prescription antibiotics.
Prescription vs Over-The-Counter Medications
If it turns out that you do have yeast infections (rather than bacterial vaginosis), the treatment is an anti-fungal medication, either via prescription or over-the-counter. You may wonder if there is a difference between the over-the-counter treatments you can buy at any drug store and the prescriptions that your doctor can write.
The answer is yes, there are differences. The over-the-counter suppository or vaginal cream treatments are less concentrated than those in prescription form. This means that the medication is not as powerful and may not be as effective in some cases.
If you have been treating your chronic yeast infections with these over-the-counter options, you may not be completely eradicating the original infection. In other words, the over-the-counter treatments are almost clearing up your infection but a little bit of that yeast remains and begins to grow again after your treatment is complete. Give prescription-strength anti-fungal medications a try (which you can also get in oral pill form) to see if you simply needed a stronger treatment to get the job done.
Now that you know more about chronic yeast infections and how to treat them, you can better care for your gynecological health and may finally be able to feel some relief from your symptoms. For more information, contact a gynecologist like those at Central Iowa OB/Gyn Specialists, PLC.