Female genitalia is comprised of a group of external structures known as the vulva. There are a number of vulval disorders and diseases that can affect women and constitute a complicated mix of problems and symptoms. The majority of women believe that itching, discharge and burning sensations in the vulva are a result of a yeast infection. Most are unaware that there are over two dozen different diseases that can cause these symptoms. Vulval disorders come with several other symptoms including pain during sex, urinary urgency, and urinary frequency. As these symptoms feel internal and the vulva is inherently external, many women assume the problem is something else.
Symptoms of vulval disorders
There are often difficulties defining the symptoms of vulval disorders as there can be so many underlying conditions at work. Generally speaking, however, there are a number of distinct forms of physical discomfort that you will notice, which are indicative of a problem in the vulva. The most common of these are itching, burning, or stinging sensations, and difficulty urinating. You may also experience a general tenderness and intermittent pain, or pain during sexual intercourse. Your skin may also feel raw.
Risk factors and causes of vulval disorders
There are a variety of causes for vulvar diseases. Your skin may become irritated by products you are using, such as soap or even lubricants. Bacterial infections, an excessive growth of the vulva’s natural fungi, and parasites can also be a cause. Some are triggered by imbalances in hormones that occur naturally during pregnancy and as we age. You may notice a recurrence of a particular issue, such as Bacterial Vaginosis (BV). If you have a recurring problem with a specific type of vulvar disease there may be something triggering it, such as an environmental factor, or physical stress.
It’s not uncommon for underlying infections to manifest at times when you are physically run down – colds, flu, and other illnesses and injuries can leave your body weakened. At such times you’re more vulnerable to other diseases and disorders, especially if you’ve had problems with them before.