I have another "down there" question that is - again - TMI (and a bit embarrassing :) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 14 Old 02-23-2011, 09:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So, I posted recently about hemorrhoids. Well, this time it is the front region. For awhile now (a yr maybe?) I've had this problem of having occasional labial / vaginal tears. Right now, for example, there is a "cut" / tear in the fold between the labia. It is not from intercourse (it was there before sex) or from "soaps" or similar products. It is like it happens when (gently) wiping after peeing and then just gets exacerbated by wearing clothes (undies are cotton).

 

I have tried various creams at home (like a neosporan type cream), witch hazel and tea tree oil. Nothing seems to really make it better. I have had similar "cuts" / tears nearer to the urinary opening and those hurt like crazy to pee. These "cuts"/tears seem to happen anywhere on the outer vaginal area / labial area and they suck.

 

FWIW - my kids are 4 1/2 and nearly 3, so this is not related to labor. Also, I have been to doctors (PCP, "hormone" specialist and endocrinologist for "issues" over the last 6-12 months (Feeling "out of whack", irritable, very fatigued, intolerance to temp changes, etc, etc). So far, all lab work is "normal"....but the general consensus is that I have "subclinical symptoms" and there is "not much we can do until something clinical shows up".....I have, for awhile, wondered if I am perimenopausal....or it's just over-the-top PMS ... or thyroid.... or adrenal...or a combo of some/all of the above...

 

 

Any ideas why these keep happening? Any advice as to what to do about it?


: currently not vaxing. love.gif Wife to awesome DH 10 yrs; Mama to DS1 8/06 and DS2 4/08; ribbonteal.gif for my mom who's 5 yr post, my grama who died of ovarian cancer 31 yrs ago
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#2 of 14 Old 02-23-2011, 06:47 PM
 
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Well- I just got dx with vaginal atrophy and possible lichens sclerosis. In my case, I definitely think (as of now) it all hormone related. Lichens sclerosis can cause tears. I never had any issueswith cuts only itching that recently started but the dr asked me several times if I had any cuts during sex. This was a urologist/pelvic sexual health dr. I have been having urinary problems. I had no idea I had anything going on with my vagina but it is all so closely related.A Dermatologist might be the one to see about the skinissue unless you have a good uro/genital specialist. I am going to another dr tomorrow and hopefully she will shed some light on the hormone part of my issues. The drs are so specialized you kind of have to put the peices together yourself. Don't scare yourself too much when you google lichens sclerosis. The info out there is apparently scarier than the disease for most people (IF that's even what's going on) With me low estrogen is causing skin irritation.

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#3 of 14 Old 02-24-2011, 08:57 AM
 
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Yeast infections can cause tears/fissures. That's usually how I know I've got the yeastie beasties! I usually get fissures, but not typical itching/discharge kind of symptoms. Found this out years back when I went in for a painful tear that didn't want to go away, and cultures showed I had a bunch of yeast! Treated the yeast infection and the tear healed right up.

 

I hope you find out the cause asap and gt it taken care of! Those things are painful!! greensad.gif


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#4 of 14 Old 02-24-2011, 11:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the input mamas!

Deir - I've looked up Lichen sclerosis and it didn't seem to "fit"...though I suppose it could still be a possibility... I'm sorry you are having to deal with it :(

 

Vermillion - You know, I'd wondered about yeast. After never having had one, I now (for the last 4-5 months) seem to be getting one each month about a week before my period starts. Then, it'll go away when my period starts. Sucks. I did have a hx of "gut yeast" (per my kinesiologist) though that has been cleared up for awhile. So, what was the treatment for the yeast infection?? I have applied nystatin cream (that I already had in my cabinet) and it seemed to make little difference.

 

I did try applying a talc powder and, believe it or not, it does seem to help! Perhaps that does help indicate that it could be yeast - dry area=less likely for yeast to grow?!? 


: currently not vaxing. love.gif Wife to awesome DH 10 yrs; Mama to DS1 8/06 and DS2 4/08; ribbonteal.gif for my mom who's 5 yr post, my grama who died of ovarian cancer 31 yrs ago
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#5 of 14 Old 02-24-2011, 12:44 PM
 
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I also get perineal fissures from yeast, without the typical smell/discharge symptoms that are supposedly "normal". And hemmerroids, too (my DD is 16 weeks tomorrow).  I've also noticed that the tears, itching, etc. are worse when I am "wetter" than normal. Sometimes wearing a panty liner helps, as it wicks the moisture away. Not super natural, though.

 

(And this reminds me I need to treat my yeast again, as I started intense itching/pain a couple of days ago. I just use the OTC Monistat, 3-day or 7-day.  Although I am tempted to re-fill the Diflucan prescription I got when I thought I had thrush...)


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#6 of 14 Old 02-25-2011, 06:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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fissures - that's a great word to describe it - or "micro-tears", I've seen that too. Though, this most recent fissure/tear (between labia) was large enough that DH could clearly see it - it looked like a split.

 

The powder has helped tremendously with the fissures - I'm not getting more and the ones I've had are clearing up. But, now that it is a week or two before my period, I'm starting to get a bit of the itchy feeling....not sure if it is from the powder or from yeast....

 

For those of you who know it is yeast, did you have to go to the doctor to get a diagnosis?? What did they do? (e.g., just a swab or a full pelvic exam??)


: currently not vaxing. love.gif Wife to awesome DH 10 yrs; Mama to DS1 8/06 and DS2 4/08; ribbonteal.gif for my mom who's 5 yr post, my grama who died of ovarian cancer 31 yrs ago
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#7 of 14 Old 02-25-2011, 09:08 AM
 
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I get those types of yeast infections, too. It's like it's all external. The first time I had it, the nurse told me "it's either atypical yeast infection, or atypical herpes. If you try monistat and it helps, it's the yeast" She had tried to do a swab, but said the light on the microscope died when she went to look at it. Ah, the odd things we remember. Anyway, now when I start to feel it, I just wipe with vinegar (if I catch it early, it'll feel soothing - if it's too far along, it'll burn!) on a cotton ball so long as I have symptoms, and take extra probiotics/yogurt, and it usually clears up pretty quick before it gets bad.
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#8 of 14 Old 02-25-2011, 03:19 PM
 
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Vinegar! That's a great idea!

 

I had my midwives check it out when I was pregnant last summer, and they saw yeast ("old yeast") on the slide. Monistat cleared it up, and I was actually OK until recently, when it started again. Changes in vaginal discharge, maybe, triggering the yeast? For years I didn't know what it was and just lived with the itch, or tried hemorrhoid cream (which didn't work, obv). The first time I heard yeast was about five years ago, when I hadn't been to an OB in a couple of years and had just started a new relationship. That's when I first realized I had fissures, and the doc and I both chalked them up to the new relationship (read: lots of sex!).  I had a bacterial infection at the same time. The itching and fissures have come and gone over time, and are worse sometimes and better sometimes.


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#9 of 14 Old 02-26-2011, 06:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks for the idea for vinegar...I will have to try it :)

 

If or when I go to the dr for this, do I just ask them to do a swab? It is completely necessary to get a "real" diagnosis? (wait, I suppose that depends on whether or not I get it cleared up on my own)

 

The thing that is just really bugging me is that the yeast comes back every stinkin' month before my period. Then, after my period, it takes so long to "heal" (fissures, clear up of yeast, etc) that I don't get to enjoy sex very much anymore. Compound that with the fact that my libido has plummeted (to non-existent at some times of the month) in the past 6 or so months and it just all SUCKS. Again, I am fairly sure it is all hormonal (I have clinical PCOS (based on bloodwork,) but now have regular periods for first time in my life) as I used to have a VERY high / good libido... and no, I do not believe it is just from having kids (the lack of sleep, etc) b/c even when boys were quite young and we were getting NO sleep and I was breastfeeding, my libido was still high.

Pretty much this all seemed to start about a yr to yr and a half ago (ds2 was about 2 at that time, he's nearly 3 now). 

 

FWIW - I do have other "symptoms" (intolerance to hot/cold, hands/feet that are ALWAYS cold, mental "fogginess", extreme irritability at times and sudden mood changes all month; nausea, headaches, breast tenderness, yeast just before beginning period) (there are probably other symptoms, but I can't think of them right now).

My diet is good (better than it's ever been; and gluten free), I exercise regularly, I drink plenty of water; I sleep as much as possible at night with 2 kids (which is not enough for me, but better than it has been!).

I'd love any input :)


: currently not vaxing. love.gif Wife to awesome DH 10 yrs; Mama to DS1 8/06 and DS2 4/08; ribbonteal.gif for my mom who's 5 yr post, my grama who died of ovarian cancer 31 yrs ago
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#10 of 14 Old 02-26-2011, 03:16 PM
 
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I understand completely what you are describing bc I have had the same problem.  For me, it was always yeast.  I wash with Bronner's Baby Mild, hop on the bed with a blow dryer, and then sort of let it all hang out until one of the kids comes pounding on the door.  If I can, I will wear a flowy skirt with no undies for a few days to ensure excellent circulation.  haha


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#11 of 14 Old 02-26-2011, 03:27 PM
 
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Yeast infections right before your period are common as they can be hormonally triggered. You might want to see a doc for a for sure diagnosis so that you know that when you get that symptom, you can treat it like yeast and get rid of it. A few courses of oral Diflucan might not be a bad idea. I used to have lots of yeast problems (right before my period always!) and I did several courses of Diflucan, three days later another Diflucan when I got symptoms. And it helped a ton! Doc just wrote the double prescription with lots of refills. I had to do this three months in a row when I'd get symptoms and then a few other times in the next year. It all seemed well for a while. A few years after that, I started having problems again, and this time the doctor treated myself with the double Diflucan as well as my partner and that worked instantly! One 2 pill treatment for both of us and I was fine with no 'relapses'.   So....if you think it might be yeast, you might want to treat your partner as well.


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#12 of 14 Old 02-27-2011, 09:17 AM
 
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Have you considered doing a garlic suppository for the yeast infection? The good thing about garlic (besides being super-cheap and natural) is that it also kills bacteria, so you don't swing back and forth between a yeast infection and a bacterial infection. (I did this for years before I discovered using garlic for infections).

 

 

re: lichen sclerosis. I had a dx of lichen sclerosis once. (along with lupus and other auto-immune/inflammation/hormone stuff going on). Acupuncture and Chinese herbs cured both. Once-a-week for 6 months. Lichen sclerosis, lupus, random pain, irregular periods...all gone. And I got pregnant twice. Lost both, but then carried a successful pg to term.


DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

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#13 of 14 Old 02-27-2011, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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blessedwithboys.. I use Dr. Bronner's baby mild ... and when start to "flare up" - even THAT is irritating to my parts :(  (I use only water during those times). As for the hair dryer....that conjures up quite an image! hehehe  :) And, flowy skirts...well, those I don't own (at times, I wish I had a few :)

 

ASusan...Ummm, this maybe a silly question...but the garlic suppository - do it vaginally or rectally???  I like the idea of using garlic b/c of it being natural AND cheap :)

Glad you were able to have your DS!! :)


: currently not vaxing. love.gif Wife to awesome DH 10 yrs; Mama to DS1 8/06 and DS2 4/08; ribbonteal.gif for my mom who's 5 yr post, my grama who died of ovarian cancer 31 yrs ago
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#14 of 14 Old 02-28-2011, 09:36 AM
 
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Peel the clove of garlic and insert it vaginally. Replace every 6-8 hours. You should have relief within 3 days, probably earlier.

 

If you score the clove with knife, you will release more of the good juices, but some women find that this burns. Do it just a little at first.

 

Some women thread a thread through the clove so you can remove it like a tampon, but I just reach up and hook it with my finger to remove it.


DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

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