Vaginal itching is a tingling or uneasy irritation of the skin of the vagina and the surrounding area (vulva). The itching may cause a desire to scratch the affected area.
Although vaginal itching is the hallmark of yeast infections and other vaginal infections including sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), itching in the vagina and vulva areas has multiple causes. Vaginal itching can also arise due to chemical irritants that may be found in detergents or soaps, douches and vaginal creams, toilet paper, bath products, feminine hygiene products, and vaginal contraceptive products.
Women in the menopausal transition may experience vaginal itching due to fluctuations in estrogen levels. As estrogen levels decline in the perimenopause, the vaginal wall becomes thinner and drier, and itching may result.
VAGINAL ITCHING – CAUSES
Some studies have shown a link between psychological stress and vaginal yeast infections. This is likely due to the fact that stress is known to have a negative effect on the immune system and could possibly increase the likelihood of getting a yeast infection.
The usual mistake with vulva itching is to assume that you have thrush, and keep on applying anti-thrush creams that you have bought from a pharmacy. This may actually worsen the condition, because you can become allergic to some of the ingredients. If an anti-thrush cream does not deal with the problem within a few days, or if the itching comes back, see your doctor. If you have a skin condition, and not thrush, you need the appropriate treatment.
Common Vaginal Itching Causes
Chemical irritants – such as detergents, fabric softeners, feminine sprays, ointments, creams, douches, and contraceptive foams or jellies;
Perimenopause and Menopause – the drop in estrogen causes thinning of the vaginal wall and less lubrication;
Stress – may increase vaginal itching and make you more susceptible to infections;
Vaginal yeast infection – often includes a discharge that is white and curd-like.
Vaginal yeast infections can be brought on by antibiotics, birth control pills, pregnancy, menstruation, condom use, sexual intercourse, diabetes, and a weakened immune system;
Disclaimer: It is strongly recommended to consult your doctor for professional advice. Above mentioned information and recommendations are just general and should be adapted to each person according to personal health indicators and status.