"Why Do I Get Vaginal Infections So Frequently?"
Question: I'm 24 years-old and I consider myself to be overall very healthy. I workout and eat a pretty balance diet. My biggest concern with myself is the recurring vaginal infections that I keep getting. I seem to get some type of infection like yeast or vaginitis every 2-3 months. I'm not on any antibiotics-I really don't think this is normal. What could be causing this?
"Don't be...at least you asked!"
Answer: There are a number of reasons for recurring vaginal infections. I noticed you said that you workout. I don't know what your after work hygiene is, but it's important to get out of those sweaty underwear after a workout. As a matter of fact, it's important to get out of any wet underwear. That area of the body is already warm and the added moisture can become a breeding ground for bacteria.
Are you sexually active? If so, are you practicing safe sex and with one partner. Sex with multiple partners, particularly unprotected sex can cause more frequent vaginal infections, including trichomoniasis, a common (and treatable) STD.
Believe it or not, showers and baths can vaginal infections. Sure you have to take clean your body, however; you should limit the harsh soaps that you use on that area of your body. Also be sure to dry well after a bath and shower and be sure to rinse well while taking a shower.
Hormone changes caused by certain contraceptive, certain times of the month like around your menstrual cycle, and some diseases can also trigger this problem.
Tea Tree Oil has many many uses, including acting as an antifungal. It has been shown effective against candida, the cause of yeast infections.
Echinacea acts as an immune stimulant. A study showed that women have fewer recurrent vaginal yeast infections with echinacea.
Garlic can discourage growth of yeast and other organisms that can cause vaginal discomfort.
Caraway oil is strongly fungicidal and effective (particularly against bacterial and candida (yeast) infections).
Golden Seal or Oregon grape root can be used as a douche to reduce infection.
Probiotics will help your body rid itself of harmful bacteria and eliminate infections.
Yogurt (which is high in probiotics) would be a good addition to your breakfast. It's not a vitamin or herbal supplement, but if you are prone to yeast infections, think about adding it to your diet. Also, many women have reported symptom relief when using plain, unsweetened yogurt as in insert during a yeast infection. This can be done several ways. The two most common methods include coating tampons with yogurt before inserting them or freezing yogurt in the fingers of plastic gloves to form inserts (but be prepared for a very cold shocker). Remember, the yogurt method is non-traditional and can be messy.
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