5 tips to prevent yeast infections during pregnancy

Pregnant women develop vaginal yeast infections easily, so get handy hints on how you can lower your risk…

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Hormones. Thanks to these natural substances, you have glossier locks, bigger boobs and that enviable pregnancy glow. But this is also the most common reason behind your yeast infection!

Explains SmartParents ob-gyn expert, Dr Christopher Chong, “Due to the hormonal changes, there is more sugar produced in the vaginal secretions and yeast grows well under such conditions.” Diabetic mums-to-be are also at higher risk of infection because of the high sugar content in their urine. 

Incidentally, it can be tough to clean your nether regions effectively as your baby bump is in the way. Coupled with your reduced immunity during pregnancy, a yeast infection may be the result. Yeast — and other bacteria — can also enter your vaginal canal, too, when you have intercourse during pregnancy. 

The scary news is that your yeast infection — caused by the candida albicans fungus — could pose a serious health risk to your unborn baby. However, Dr Chong explains that for infection to occur in the foetus, the water bag would have to be broken, which is an emergency anyway.

“Due to the hormonal changes, there is more sugar produced in the vaginal secretions and yeast grows well under such conditions.”

Dr Chong points out that if you get a yeast infection during pregnancy, this could “cause your resistance to drop further and for more serious infections to set in.” In the worst case scenario, it could trigger premature labour!

Though the risks are low, your baby could catch the yeast infection — called thrush — during labour. If necessary, your paediatrician will probably prescribe an anti-fungal mouthwash and medication to treat your baby’s condition. Follow Dr Chong’s suggestions to lower your chances of getting an infection:

1) Practise good personal hygiene

Besides bathing daily, Dr Chong points out doing simple things like using clean underwear or changing your panty liners regularly can help reduce the risk of infection. After relieving yourself — whether it’s a #1 or a #2 — make sur you clean from front to back. Also, keep your vaginal area dry.

2) Observe a balanced diet and exercise

Eating well and staying fit won’t just help you cope better with the rigours of pregnancy, it will also boost your immunity.

Click for three more expert tips to combat the risk of a yeast infection…