Clinics at: Hospital of St John and St Elizabeth | Clementine Churchill Hospital | Portland Hospital

Common Causes Behind an Itchy and Swelly Vagina

A swollen and itching vagina is an often painful, uncomfortable, and worrying symptom that could happen due to multiple reasons. It could be due to infections, hormonal imbalance, sexual intercourse, injury, irritating ingredients in your hygiene products, skin disorders, sexually transmitted disease, or even cancer.

Fortunately, you do not need to worry too much about vaginal itching and swelling. However, you must contact a gynaecologist if the condition prolongs, if you suspect an underlying disease or if you have trouble performing daily tasks. The gynaecologist performs examinations and tests to diagnose the condition and recommend proper treatment.

  • Yeast Infection

Also called thrust, yeast infections are caused by the unchecked growth of Candida albicans in the vagina. Though a common scenario, other symptoms include irritated and red skin, burning, lumpy and thick discharge, pain during sexual intercourse, and urination. It is commonly treated with over-the-counter medication or antifungal medication therapy, but you must also visit a gynaecologist for vaginal itching treatment.

  • Bacterial Vaginosis

The vagina must always have a healthy balance of naturally occurring good and harmful bacteria. Bacterial vaginosis can be caused by scented hygiene soaps and products. The symptoms include watery, foamy, and thin discharge, grey or off-white discharge, and a fishy smell. It is another cause for an itching vagina, but the condition usually heals by itself. If you notice symptoms even after a week, a private gynaecologist can prescribe antibacterial medication or gel.

  • Irritants

The vagina often reacts to products that are used around it, such as scented washing powder, lubricants, soap, menstrual products, body wash, bubble baths, topical contraceptives, ointments, and creams, douches, toilet paper, and fabric softener. In addition, urinary incontinence and diabetes further aggravate the itching and irritation, for which you must undergo vaginal pain treatment.

  • Cellulitis

This is a bacterial infection that occurs on broken or cut skin, such as after shaving or an injury. Consult a gynaecologist if you are experiencing vaginal swelling and soreness, and you will get the required vaginal swelling treatment.

  • Cysts

These are other significant reasons for an itching and swollen vagina, which are categorized into two kinds:

Bartholin’s cysts occur on the glands located on either side of the vaginal, which are harmless and resolve independently. 

Gartner’s ducts are formed in foetuses when they develop their sexual organs, which usually disappear after birth. However, if the cysts remain or become infected, they cause swelling and pain around the vagina.

  • Genital Herpes

Sexually transmitted diseases are common while having unprotected sexual intercourse, which causes conditions such as gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, genital herpes, genital warts, and chlamydia. Coming to genital herpes, there is no cure for the virus yet. Symptoms could be vaginal sores, abnormal growths, pain while urinating, swelling, aching, and discomfort along with yellow or green vaginal discharge.

  • Injury During Sexual Intercourse

The absence of lubrication during sexual intercourse can injure the skin, and bacteria could cause infections. Therefore, always ensure that the vagina is lubricated during sexual intercourse to prevent this condition.

  • Vulvar Cancer

In rare situations, vaginal itching could signify vulvar cancer or the external part of the female genitals. Symptoms include abnormal bleeding, pain, and itching in the vulvar region. It is successfully treated if diagnosed in its early stages, which is why women’s health checkups are necessary.

  • Pregnancy

The vagina often swells during pregnancy, as the growing foetus adds pressure to the pelvic blood vessels and muscles. The increased pressure causes swelling, which also causes swollen feet and hands in pregnant women.

How to Treat a Swollen and Itching Vagina?

For the best possible treatment, visit a gynaecologist. Once they diagnose the cause, you would be treated with antibiotics, antiparasitic, antivirals, pills, ointments, and creams. Regularly take your medication, avoid sexual intercourse till the infection clears, and keep yourself clean with warm water and a medically approved cleanser or unscented soap.

Vaginal swelling and itching being common conditions, can be treated quite easily at any medical centre. If you are looking for a private gynaecologist in London, contact us at Well Women Clinic.

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