Yeast Infections and Pregnancy

First of all, if you are pregnant and suspect that you have a vaginal yeast infection, it is very important you have a doctor diagnose and treat it. Some of the treatments for yeast infections, especially oral treatments such as Diflucan, may cause problems for the developing fetus and should only be used under the care of your doctor.

It is possible to have a yeast infection and get pregnant. The overgrowth of Candida albicans in the vagina will not kill sperm, so if you are ovulating and have unprotected sex you may get pregnant. Pregnant women do seem to be more apt to get yeast infections and some speculate the reason for this is the immune system in pregnant women is somewhat suppressed to protect the developing fetus.

If the immune system were not suppressed during pregnancy it is possible your body would see the fetus as a “foreign body” which would need to be attacked and eliminated. Since your immune system is suppressed, Candida albicans may take advantage of the situation and overgrow. This overgrowth may manifest as a vaginal yeast infection. If you are prone to developing yeast infections when you are not pregnant then you may be very likely to experience them while you are pregnant.

Topical applications directly to the vagina would be the preferred method of dealing with an infection at this time. Douching would be out of the question and again, please confer with your OB on how to treat a yeast infection if you are pregnant.

If you are considering having a baby and are experiencing vaginal yeast infections, please contact your doctor and get tested to determine exactly the cause of your discomfort. Bacterial vaginosis (BV) has been associated with doubling the risk of preterm birth. It has also been associated with twice the risk of postpartum uterine infections. Many doctors now routinely screen women at their first pregnancy visit, but it would be much better to have this problem taken care of before you get pregnant. Trichomoniasis has also been associated with an increase in the possibility of a preterm delivery and low birth weight. Please have these conditions checked before you get pregnant!

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