Few Basic Facts About Yeast Infection During Pregnancy
It is not unusual to find expectant women becoming concerned about having a yeast infection during pregnancy. This concern is quite normal as the risk of the woman developing the yeast infection, also referred to as Candidiasis during pregnancy is twice more likely than any other time in her life. Even though the threat posed by the yeast infection to the pregnancy is not considered very serious, to avoid the small possibility of developing complication, women who are giving birth are advised to seek the help of a doctor.
Yeast organisms thrive more in the intestinal tract and genital tracts of people, however, they normally exist in warm, moist areas of the body. If kept under control, Candida albicans rarely cause an infection. On the other hand, yeast infection can develop if Candida organisms are allowed to proliferate rapidly due to internal, external, or lifestyle-related factors. The three prime reasons why yeast infections often develop during this critical time of a woman's life are stress, hormone imbalances and increased blood sugar.
Causes of Yeast Infection in Pregnant Women
Stress: It is quite normal for the majority of women to be stressed out about so many things the instant she learns that she is having a baby. Remember, stress causes the immune system to become vulnerable to infections. Because of the physical and emotional stresses affecting most pregnant women, expectant mothers are more susceptible to yeast infections than those who are not. With that said, women are encouraged to be as healthy as possible so they can steer clear of yeast infection during pregnancy.
Hormonal Changes: A woman’s body goes through so many physiological changes during pregnancy. Among the numerous changes that occur, the fluctuation in hormone levels heavily influences the development of yeast infections . Studies have shown that conditions that produce hormonal imbalances can bring about yeast infections. It doesn’t really matter which hormone goes up or which one goes down. When there is an imbalance in hormones, the body regulates the amount of hormones by pulling the excess hormones out of the blood and stores them in the intestinal tract. Because hormones negatively affect the good bacteria that normally live in the intestines, yeast organisms take this opportunity to multiply and outnumber the healthy bacteria thereby causing infection.
High Blood Sugar: It is very common for most pregnant women to develop a craving for flour-based foods and sweets. These cravings for carbohydrate-rich foods and sugar increase the threat of yeast infection during pregnancy. Please be reminded that Candida organisms normally thrive in the vagina and are kept under control by the vagina's acidic environment. Yeast organisms find nourishment in the carbohydrate-rich secretions. Also the vaginal secretions of pregnant women with high blood sugar levels contain more sugar, therefore the yeast organisms are able to multiply rapidly and cause infection in the area.
Symptoms of Yeast Infection
The symptoms of a yeast infection during pregnancy may include one or more of the following :
An expectant mother who suspects that she has yeast infection is advised to see the doctor to rule out other conditions such as Chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, and bacterial vaginosis.
Doctors typically only prescribe vaginal creams and suppositories for pregnant women. Fluconazole(Diflucan) is a oral medication normally prescribed for the treatment of the yeast infection, however because it has not been proven safe during pregnancy and lactation, it is not prescribed for the pregnant woman. Yeast infections can be passed to your baby's mouth during pregnancy if left untreated and as such it is very important that you seek prompt treatment, especially during the third trimester. This is also known as "thrush" and can be effectively treated with Nystatin.