What is the safest way to treat a yeast infection when you are trying to conceive and could potentially be pregnant?
What is a yeast infection?
Yeast infections are caused by the fungus candida. Vaginal itchiness and dryness, a burning sensation, pain or discomfort while urinating or having intercourse, and "weird" vaginal discharge are the main symptoms of a yeast infection. "Yeast" or the fungus candida albicans, is actually naturally present on the skin. Somewhere between 20 percent and 50 percent of all women carry yeast in their vaginal area without having any symptoms. Thrush is when the fungus that is normally present starts to overgrow, and most women know the unpleasant feeling that comes with it. There are numerous ways to treat a yeast infection at home, from pouring yogurt onto the vaginal area to over the counter antifungal remedies that come in various forms.
Getting pregnant with thrush
Can a yeast infection prevent pregnancy? Many couples who are trying to conceive wonder whether that is true, but there is no scientific evidence that that is the case. Still, there is no doubt that thrush is a very unpleasant experience. When intercourse hurts, you will probably not manage to get pregnant. Even if it doesn't, many women simply don't feel comfortable having sex when they have thrush. Obviously, getting pregnant becomes rather difficult that way. There is another thing to take into account stress, lack of sleep, and a poor diet are all risk factors that make a yeast infection more likely. If worrying about pregnancy is causing you stress and sleepless nights, make sure that you find a stress relief activity that actually works for you, and make sure to talk about your feelings with your partner. If, on the other hand, your eating habits could do with improving, a yeast infection is the last reason to worry about that. Remember that the first few weeks after conception are very important, and that a balanced and varied diet contributes to your potential baby's health as well as your own.
According to some sources, remedies used to treat thrush can disturb the pH balance of the vagina, while the abnormal discharge caused by thrush could interfere with the journey of sperm to the egg. As far as I can find, there is no reliable evidence that this is the case. It is, however, something interesting to keep in mind not that there is anything you could possibly do to avoid these "side effects".
How about yeast infections during pregnancy?
Remember we said stress and a poor diet are risk factors for thrush? Pregnancy is another significant risk factor. During pregnancy, the vagina is rich in a type of glucose that the fungus candida albicans thrives on. Taking a break from sugary foods can help prevent thrush during pregnancy. If you're already itching down there, natural remedies such as probiotics and inserting a tampon with probiotic yogurt may do the trick and send the yeast infection packing. Apparently, prescription drugs for thrush are not known for their amazing effectiveness. If you do want an allopathic remedy, we strongly recommend you see your doctor first instead of taking your chances with one of the numerous over the counter remedies for thrush.