A majority of women experience a yeast infection and/or a urinary tract infection (UTI) at some point in their lives. While both can have some similar symptoms, there are some differences between the two conditions.
The symptoms of UTI and yeast infection are similar in that both are characterized by burning, itchy and painful sensations and the situation can get worse with time. However, there are some important differences.
The most noticeable sign of a UTI can be the urge to urinate. However, when you go to the bathroom, there is no urine. This can be quite uncomfortable. Also, people afflicted with UTI can suffer from fever or chills.
Yeast Infection Symptoms
Yeast infections, on the other hand, are characterized by an itchy sensation around the labia and vagina. It can be painful to the touch. With time, as the condition becomes worse, you will often have a thick and foul-smelling vaginal discharge. Vaginal soreness, pain during sex and redness of the vulva are some other symptoms of the condition.
UTI affects a part of the urinary tract including the urethra, bladder and kidneys. The infection typically begins in the urethra and then goes up to the urinary tract. This causes a dull pain in the lower right side of the back. This is where the urinary tract joins with the kidneys. At this juncture, it is important to visit a doctor as soon as possible to prevent kidney infection.
Yeast infections, also referred to as Candida infections, can affect any part of the body including the mouth, vagina, food pipe (esophagus), breast and nipples, and even the bloodstream.
The symptoms of the conditions are caused by different infectious agents. Some classes of bacteria and fungi cause UTIs. Yeast infections are caused by Candida albicans.
Some factors that lead to UTI symptoms include improper hygiene, sexual activities and health conditions such as diabetes or diseases that affect the immune system, among others. Yeast infections can be due to chemotherapy, immunosuppressant drugs, use of vaginal perfumes, douches, or shower gels, pregnancy, oral contraceptives, and infections transmitted through partners.
When the symptoms of UTI are left untreated for long periods, it can lead to life threatening conditions including severe kidney damage or pyelonephritis. Yeast infections, on the other hand, just cause severe itching and discomfort. This does not lead to anything serious.
Yeast Infection Treatment vs UTI Treatment
The method of treatment of the symptoms of the two conditions is different. While UTI is treated with antibiotics, antifungal or antimycotic medication is used to treat yeast infections.
Most women afflicted with UTI also face yeast infection immediately after the bladder infection. The main reason behind this is the usage of antibiotics to treat UTI. Sometimes the antibiotics that are administered to a patient to treat urinary infection can kill the good bacteria present in the urinary tract. This can cause yeast infection to develop simultaneously. Keep in mind that the course of antibiotics needs to be completed as failure to do this can lead to a recurrence of the infection.
Knowing about the differences between UTI and yeast infection symptoms will help you identify your concern so that you can take appropriate steps to overcome the problem. In the following video, a naturopath explains how a yeast infection could lead to a follow-on UTI.