Itch is the body’s way of drawing attention to an area to let you know that something is irritating that particular area of the body. This itch can occur through a variety of reasons, however when the itch happens in a more sensitive part of the body such as the vagina – including the vulva, labia, clitoris or even vaginal opening, this itch can get quite uncomfortable.
This itch can be on its own or accompanied with burning and irritation of the skin in the genital area. Furthermore this itch can either be persistent, occuring once in a blue moon or even occurring with a specific pattern – after sex, before or after menses.
Each of these combinations can point to a different cause such as a yeast infection, bacterial vaginosis (gardnerella infection), sexually transmitted infection (STI) such as Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Ureaplasma, Mycoplasma, Trichomonas. Other causes of vaginal itch also include chemical irritants of the area or even menopause.
For infections these can be easily diagnosed with a DTAP Express full vaginal swab where the correct diagnosis will allow for targeted treatment. Treatments of yeast infections include table antifungals, antifungal creams and or also antifungal pessaries. Bacteria vaginosis would then require treatments such as pessaries and antibiotics. Both of these conditions can be prevented as well with the use of probiotics.
However for other non infective causes of vaginal itch there are a few more considerations which would require a discussion with our doctors at DTAP clinic and these non infective causes include Menopause or even contact with chemical irritants.
Chemical irritants can come from anything such as creams, condoms, washing detergent or soaps, scented clothes and materials that come into contact directly with the vagina and genital area. Treatment against chemical irritants include simple steroidal creams, antihistamines and avoidance.
Last but not least vaginal itch that is caused by menopause is usually diagnosed when a woman stops her menstruation, and her hormonal estrogen levels are dipped. Again this estrogen levels can be picked up with a blood test and the treatments include estrogen vaginal creams as well.
The most important aspect of dealing with vaginal itch is to differentiate between an infective cause vs a non infective cause. And within the infective cause to know which type of fungal or bacterial infection this may be with a full vaginal swab test and getting the correct treatment to target the problem at its root once and for all.