Summer is in full swing -- and apparently, so are yeast infections. I just received my third “Dear Abiola” letter to my Intimacy Intervention column asking for yeast-related advice. The last one said, “Help! Yeast Infections are ruining my love life! Is it my imagination that I get more yeast infections in the summer?” Nope, it’s not your imagination.
Yeast infections occur when our normal vaginal flora is disrupted. According to Web MD, “75% of women have had at least one vaginal yeast infection during their lives,and as many as 45% of women have had two or more.” Symptoms may include: itching, burning, redness, soreness, swelling, redness, inflammation and unusual vaginal discharge. To decrease the likelihood that you could get a summertime yeast infection you may want to wear cotton underwear, change your feminine protection more often, avoid douches and scented sprays, and change out of your wet bathing suits and clothing as soon as possible.
The candida yeast experts at BodyEcology.com recommend an anti-fungal diet to prevent yeast infections. They advise that we eliminate sugar, add probiotic-rich “fermented foods and drinks that are full of beneficial microflora” to your diet, in a addition to “healthy, organic unrefined fats and oils like coconut oil.”
In addition, I touched base with the good folks over at Monistat to learn some of the myths and truths about yeast infections. Monistat is an over-the-counter prescription strength treatment for yeast infections. Here’s what they had to say:
Myth: Yeast infections are incredibly contagious.
Truth: Yeast infections are not contagious at all. They are triggered by an imbalance of the vagina’s natural bacteria and cannot be “caught.”
Myth: Sex causes yeast infections.
Truth: Although more than 80 percent of women ages 16 to 24 believe having sex is a primary cause of yeast infections, this is not true. Yeast infections can be caused by a variety of factors like birth control, antibiotics, illness, or even your period.
Myth: There’s nothing you can to do avoid getting a yeast infection.
Truth: While you might not be able to to completely prevent yeast infections, you can reduce your risk. Use unscented soaps and body washes, wear breathable cotton undies especially when working out, avoid tight clothes that trap sweat and change out of wet swimsuits. Taking these actions will lessen your chances of infection.
Myth: You can figure this out by yourself.
Truth: Nothing in this post is meant to replace the advice of your doctor or healthcare professional. The three most common types of vaginitis are yeast infections, trichomoniasis, which is an STD, and bacterial vaginosis, which is overgrowth of the organisms normally present in your vagina. Each is a separate diagnosis with its own treatments.
Happy healthy summer!
Abiola Abrams is the author of the award-winning Sacred Bombshell Handbook of Self-Love, Manifest Your Miracles meditation album and Womanifesting Goddess Affirmation Cards. The popular lifestyle guru is also the founder of the Spiritpreneur School podcast, blog, web TV show, and online academy at SacredBombshell.com. Follow her on Instagram @abiolatv to continue the discussion about this week's hot topic, and then email her your burning questions now. Anything you send will be posted anonymously, promise.