You’re the best expert when it comes to your own body, so you’re the first one to know when something is wrong. Self-diagnosis and treatment is becoming more common as we take control of our own health.
It makes it even easier now with so many medicines available over the counter. But that doesn’t mean you wouldn’t benefit from a visit to your GP.
Here, we look at where treating yourself can go wrong.
Thrush is an extremely common condition in women caused by an overgrowth of a fungus (yeast) called candida in the vagina. Many women experience thrush during pregnancy or after bout of illness – especially if they’ve taken antibiotics.
Symptoms may include vaginal itch, a non-odorous white discharge and a burning sensation when urinating. A doctor can provide a definite diagnosis after a physical examination and vaginal swab, but many women prefer to skip the GP
visit altogether and simply use an over-the-counter (OTC) anti-fungal treatment.
The problem is that not all vaginal conditions are thrush. There are other serious vaginal diseases that have similar symptoms.
The biggest risk is that some women, especially younger women, could easily miss sexually transmitted infections like chlamydia.
These women may be treating themselves for thrush, when they really should be screened for chlamydia with simple urine test.
If chlamydia is left untreated, it can eventually spread through the reproductive system and cause serious problems, including infertility and pelvic inflammatory disease.
Bacterial vaginosis can also produce similar symptoms to thrush (although the discharge is more likely to have an unpleasant smell). It’s caused by an overgrowth of gardenella bacteria in the vagina and can be easily treated with antibiotics prescribed by your doctor.
If you find your symptoms are still around a week after starting an OTC thrush treatment, see your doctor to rule out the possibility of other vaginal infections.
RASHES & INFLAMMATION
If you’ve suffered from skin allergies all your life, you might know how to deal with the occasional skin rash. There’s a wide range of creams and ointments available to ease inflammation and soothe itching, and some contain cortisone – an anti-inflammatory steroid.
The most common problem with using cortisone creams is that people sometimes use them on fungal rashes or infected eczema. Cortisone won’t have any effect on an infection.
Some people use these creams on their faces, but there are certain conditions that are made worse with cortisone. Rosacea, for example, is a common condition that some some people treat with cortisone cream and when it doesn’t work, they often assume they haven’t used enough, so they keep applying it. The usual treatment is anti-
biotics. Using cortisone cream can prolong the condition.
If you’re unsure whether your skin rash has become infected, you should visit your doctor who can put you on the right treatment.
I hope this helps…as always,live life to its fullest
21st Century = The Age of Self-Diagnosis