Things We Don’t Talk about Enough: Infections in Your Special Place

Few things will make a man go pale in the face like a woman coming back from the gynecologist with the word “Surprise!”

In my case that complete sentence was “Surprise, we have a vaginal infection.”

Now, Boyfriend works in the medical field, so he isn’t easily shocked. Hell, he’s probably the reason I have one in the first place. He picks shit up from patients and I pick shit up from him. It’s an endless circle of bacteria because humans are gross and disinfectants can only do so much.

So all he does is say, “Again?”

I know, I know. I get an infection every winter. Other people get the flu, I get… well, vaginal flu. At least the thing doesn’t sneeze. Can you imagine how weird it would be if your vagina would suddenly sneeze? Anyway.

This, kids, is why you should go to your gynecologist twice a year. Because without check-ups I wouldn’t even know what’s going on in there. In case you didn’t know this, vaginal infections can be entirely symptom free. The only symptom I had was dryness, and I thought that was just because I’m stressed and I’m getting old. Bunch of bacteria and/or yeast particles partying it up in your personal fun zone and you won’t even know until your gynecologist looks at you from between your legs and goes, “Ah, again.”

The good news is this is entirely normal and easily treatable. It’s just your regular candida. For the uninitiated, candida, besides sounding like a nice name for a girl, is a type of yeast that, according to a German insitute, can be found in 75 % of people. For the rest, it’s probably just a matter of time. It’s plenty harmless and unless you’re immune-compromised it doesn’t really do anything except exist. Sometimes it gets a little bold and gives you a vaginal infection, sometimes a gut infection. A week of microbiozidal agents sends it right back to its cave like a tiny grumpy yeast bear.

Apparently, according to my doc, some women get infections like they get a cold. Some even get an infection every time they get a cold. And it gets even more common after age 70. Which makes me wonder why there’s such a stigma attached to something so comparatively harmless. On the other hand, it makes me wonder how humanity ever survived without modern medicine. I mean, every year! A thousand years ago I would probably be dead! Some demented priest-type would probably make up some lark about my vagina being possessed by a dark matter demon, and I’d go along with it for the fun, up to and including making my vagina do voices, and then they’d throw me off a cliff. Anyway.

It’s not that big a deal, all it means is a week of vaginal suppositories that leak worse than a stress period. This time, my doc decided that we’re going hardcore, so it’s more like three weeks. I started treatment right after my period ended. Basically, there will not be a single day this month where there is nothing shoved way up my vagina. This is a lot less fun than it sounds. Anything for the little queen.

So if you’re in the same situation right now, get your behind to the doctor’s and get your meds. The pharmacy people won’t judge you, they hand out suppositories and hemorrhoids cream to old men like Halloween candy. Go forth and treat your happy place.

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