We all know, waginal itching is an uncomfortable and sometimes painful symptom. The reasons of its appearance are often due to irritating substances such as personal hygene products, infections, or menopause.
It may also be the case, that vaginal itching is the result of specific skin disorders or sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
Most of the times, vaginal itching isn’t a cause for concern. Nevertheless, you should contact your gynecologyst or general practitioner if the itching is remarkably severe or if you suspect there might be an underlying condition such as a STI.
Vaginal itching can be caused by exposure to chemicals which might trigger . These irritants may an allergic reaction that creates an itchy rash over various areas of the body, including the vagina. Common chemical irritants include:
- fabric softeners
- scented toilet paper
- bubble baths
- feminine sprays
- feminine douches
- topical contraceptives
- assorted condoms
- sex toys
Yeast is a fungus which is normally present in the vagina. It is usually well balanced and does not cause any issues, but when there is a disbalance and it grows more than it should, it can cause a yeast infection.
When taking antibiotics for any other cause, these have an impact on the normal bacterial population of the vagina. When that happens, there is a disbalance in the vaginal microbiom and it is the perfect time for yeast to over grow and cause an infection.
Bacterial vaginosis is another common cause for vaginal itching. It is always triggered by an imbalance in the vaginal microbiom. There may not be any symptoms, but when symptoms appear vaginal itching, fishy smell and abundant discharge are the most common.
Sexually transmitted infections
Numerous STIs can cause itching in the vagina.
1. Chlamydia often causes vaginal itching and a burning sensation. Although, in some cases it has no symptoms at all.
2. Genital warts, caused by HPV, include abnormal growths that may be itchy.
3. Gonorrhea, can also cause vaginal itching along with green or yellow vaginal discharge.
4. Genital herpes causes blisters or sores that can also be both painful and itchy.
5. Trichomoniasis is a parasytical infection, which can have symptoms like abnormal discharge, and itchiness.
The reduction of estrogen levels that occurs during menopause, leads to thinning of the vaginal mucosa, therefore it can provoke dryness. The dryness can cause itching and irritation.
Skin diseases, such as eczema and psoriasis, can cause redness and itching in the genital region.
Eczema is a rash that tipically happens in people with asthma, allergies, or autoimune diseases. The rash has a scaly texture and it is mostly red.
Psoriasis is a fairly common skin condition that causes scaly, itchy, red patches. very occasionnaly, these symptoms can occur on the vagina as well.
In very rare cases, vaginal itching may be due to vulvar cancer. The vulva is the external part of the female’s genitals.
Vulvar cancer may not always cause symptoms. However, when symptoms do occur, they may include itching, abnormal bleeding, or pain in the vulvar area. Vulvar cancer can be treated successfully if your doctor diagnoses it in the early stages.
It’s important to see your doctor for vaginal itching if the itching is severe enough to disrupt your daily life or sleep. Also contact your doctor if your vaginal itching persists for more than one week or if your itching occurs along with ulcers or blisters, pain, swelling, unusual vaginal discharge or discomfort during sex.
Home remedies for vaginal itching
You can prevent most causes of vaginal itching through good hygiene and avoiding irritating products. There are several steps you can take at home to prevent vaginal irritation and infection:
1. Use warm water to wash your genital area.
2. Avoid scented soaps, lotions, and bubble baths.
3. Avoid using such products as vaginal sprays and douches.
4. Change out of wet or damp clothing right after swimming or exercising.
5. Wear cotton underwear and change your underwear every day.
6. Use condoms during sexual intercourse, preferablly not assorted or scented.