#HLWDK Daily Health Tips: How Can I Treat Thrush?


Q: Doctor please, how can I treat thrush infection? I’ve taking several antibiotics but they are not working. I keep having white discharge. Please, l really need your help and drug prescription

A: Thrush/candidiasis is caused by an organism called Candida, a fungus (yeast). This infection can result in cheesy white (like ground melon/egusi seeds) vaginal discharge and vaginal itching. This itching can lead to irritation in the vagina which can become further infected by bacteria.

Candidiasis is very common in diabetics (the sugar in their urine makes the vagina a rich culture medium for them) and pregnant women who have altered glucose tolerance. This infection is also common in people whose immune systems are compromised and people who wear tight panties that do not allow their delicate inner selves to ‘breath’. Preferred materials for undies would be cotton and should be loose (I see my fashionistas frowning :D). It also happens in people who take a lot of antibiotics. Normally, some bacteria and fungi (yeast) co-exist peacefully 😀 in the vagina. To encourage this peaceful co-existence, the bacteria produce some acid that hold the yeast in check and prevent their over-growth. When antibiotics are abused, this leads to a situation where the yeast takes over 😀 (almost like a coup, right?). Though this infection can be passed on through sexual intercourse…especially oral-genital contact, it’s not really called an STI because women who are not sexually active can be infected with this.

Treatment is with anti-fungal vaginal tablets and/or anti-fungal cream which can be used for between 1-3 days depending on drug of choice. A single course dose of Fluconazole can also be taken orally. Any of these regimen may be extended if the infection is complicated…let your doctor be the best judge of that 😀

Prevention is targeted at causes:

  • Wear loose fitting cotton undies 
  • Stay away from or limit time spent in hot tubs or saunas
  • Stick strictly with the prescription for antibiotics in terms of quantity and duration
  • Change out of wet clothes eg swim suits as soon as possible

Now, this infection can be treated using oral drugs (tablets to be taken by mouth) (antifungals and not antibiotics) but these are not recommended during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Vaginal pessaries and creams are better bets in pregnancy. However, because of the very small possibility of hurting your cervix (the neck of the womb), it is advisable not to use the applicator to administer the pessary. Instead, use your finger to insert the pessary. It may be necessary to continue the drug application for about 6 days as opposed to the shorter 3-day course. Your doctor will confirm diagnosis and advice on medication duration.
For more on candidiasis, please click on the following links:
https://chatwithdrketch.com/2014/06/26/daily-health-tips-why-do-i-have-recurrent-candidiasis/
https://chatwithdrketch.com/2014/03/07/daily-health-tips-toilet-infection-seriously/
https://chatwithdrketch.com/2014/04/27/daily-health-tips-is-vaginal-discharge-normal/

Good night people 😀

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