Posted: Mar 15, 2013 11:00 AM
 
It's the last thing any of us want to talk about, but studies show that three in four women will suffer from a yeast infection, with the majority of those women admitting that having a yeast infection is down right embarrassing. Let's break the stigma on this common female health issue, with everything you need to know about having a yeast infection.

Do I have a yeast infection?

At one point or another in our lives as women, you're going to ask yourself this question. According to Monistat, three out of four women will experience a yeast infection, putting it near the top of conditions that women have... but never talk about! Let's start with the basics — how do you even know if you have a yeast infection in the first place?

For many women, yeast infections, or candidiasis (the medical term!), will begin as vaginal burning, itching or irritation. Often times, you will also experience thick vaginal discharge, similar to cottage cheese, and burning during urination (details via Monistat.com.) While similar symptoms can also be the signs of other conditions, the likelihood of them being related to a yeast infection are high.

What should I do if I think I have a yeast infection?

An alarming 36% of women believed that yeast infections could be cured using over-the-counter anti-itch creams or vaginal cleansing products.

Dr. Allision Hill, OB/GYN and member of The Mommy Docs and one of the doctor stars of the Oprah Winfrey Network's newest show, Delivery Me,  explains that, "While we always recommend that women visit their doctor if they are experiencing a yeast infection for the first time to confirm the diagnosis, the condition is easily cured with over-the-counter treatments such as Monistat." Dr. Hill also reminds us to keep track of how long your yeast infection lasts, recommending that you see your doctor if symptoms don't subside within a week.

Be sure you know exactly what you're treating your yeast infection with, when you're roaming the aisles of the drugstore: Monistat's study also showed that an alarming 36 percent of women believed that yeast infections could be cured using over-the-counter anti-itch creams or vaginal cleansing products. While these products may relieve the symptoms of a yeast infection, they do not treat the yeast infection itself.

But... I'm so embarrassed!

67% of women believe that having a yeast infection is embarrassing.

You are not alone. The study done by Monistat shows that an alarming 67 percent of women believe that having a yeast infection is embarrassing. But, considering most of us have had one, or will have one, yeast infections should be the hottest topic of conversation at playdates and coffee with your friends, shouldn't it? The first step we can take in removing the stigma from having a yeast infection is to realize that getting one is not your fault. "Yeast infections are a perfectly normal part of life for women. A yeast infection doesn't mean that you did anything wrong. It's like getting a cold," shares Jennifer Moyer of Monistat's parent company, Insight Pharmaceuticals.

At the least, if you aren't willing to make yeast infections the topic of your next girls' night out, remember that it's important to talk to your doctor about having a yeast infection — especially if it's the first time you are experiencing one.

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