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- Kunle Emmanuel
- Posts: 2063
- Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:02 pm
- Location: Lagos
A: This entity called toilet disease is a well-known one, especially in Nigeria, but does not exist anywhere except in our imaginations. Seriously!!! I would love to meet that person who caught a Sexually Transmitted Infection from a toilet seat.
The reasons are:
1) these infections hardly survive for long outside of the human body and
2) the cold and hard toilet seat is not a great medium for the germs to really grown and multiply. They are also not found in urine. Theoretically, if this is deposited on the toilet seat and one sits down on it immediately and this person has cuts and abrasions on their buttocks, perhaps this can happen. But the odd of this ever happening is seriously negligible…particularly because so many conditions will need to be satisfied! I think that going into the toilet, we should be more worried about observing personal hygiene e.g. washing our hands and drying thoroughly before leaving.
Now, to candidiasis. This 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 fashionist as frowning ). 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 and treatment guidelines for vaginal infections
Have new partners wear condoms during sexual intercourse.
Stay healthy; eat well, get enough sleep, drink enough fluids.
Keep vaginal area clean and dry.
Wear cotton underwear.
Wipe from front to back after urination or bowel movement.
Avoid using deodorant pads or tampons.
Don't use petroleum jelly or other oils for lubricants.
Use medication as long as directed.
Avoid sexual intercourse until treatment is completed and you are symptom free.
Don't scratch infected or inflamed areas; it can cause further irritation.
If using medication inside the vagina, use it during the menstrual period.
During an infection, use pads rather than tampons if menstruation occurs.
Avoid vulvo/vaginal irritants, including perfumed or deodorant soaps/body washes.
If symptoms persist after completing the treatment, an exam is indicated.
Since yeast is normally present in the vagina, it is unrealistic to try to eliminate all yeast. Therefore, the goal of treatment is to reduce the overgrowth of yeast organisms and return the vagina to a healthy balance. Treatment consists of antifungal agents in the form of tablets, vaginal creams or suppositories. Over-the-counter treatments are available. However, if you are pregnant, always be sure to have any medications approved by a health care provider. Partners are not usually treated unless they are displaying symptoms such as itching or irritation in the genital area. Treatment for male partners consists of the use of fungicidal cream on the penis.
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