thrush legs in the air

Can an STI Cause Thrush?

Whilst thrush is not classed as a sexually transmitted infection, it can be triggered by and passed on through sex. Pre-existing illnesses and health problems may trigger thrush, however, STIs are not usually the cause. 

In this blog we take a look at thrush and see how the symptoms can sometimes be similar to those caused by STDs. 

thrush legs in the air

What is Thrush?

Thrush, otherwise known as a yeast infection, most commonly occurs in women, although can also affect men. It is usually harmless, but can be uncomfortable, irritating and may recur, even if treated. Whilst thrush most commonly affects the genitals, it can also affect other areas such as the armpit, the mouth, and between the fingers.

What are the Symptoms of Thrush?

Symptoms of thrush and their severity will vary from person to person, however common symptoms in men and women include the following.

Symptoms of thrush in women:

  • A thick, white vaginal discharge (this often resembles cottage cheese)
  • Discomfort, itching and irritation around the vagina
  • Soreness and stinging when you pee or during sex
  • Redness, swelling or splits in the skin around the genitals

Symptoms of thrush in men

  • White discharge (this often resembles cottage cheese)
  • Irritation, burning and redness around the head of the penis and under the foreskin
  • Difficulty pulling back the foreskin
  • An unpleasant smell

Do I Have Thrush or an STI?

As 75% of women will experience thrush in their lifetime, it can be easy to self-diagnose symptoms as thrush. However, there are various STIs that have similar symptoms to thrush, and are often misdiagnosed as such, including:


The symptoms of thrush and chlamydia can be very similar, including irritation, discharge and pain when peeing. If you have chlamydia, you may also develop abdominal pain and urinary tract infections (UTIs).


A key difference between thrush and gonorrhea is the appearance of discharge. In thrush, discharge tends to be thick and white, often resembling cottage cheese. Discharge caused by gonorrhea, however, tends to be on the yellow side.


The symptoms of Trichomoniasis are very similar to that of thrush. You may experience vaginal discharge (this may appear white, grey or yellow in colour), genital redness and irritation, and pain when urinating or during sexual activity. If you are sexually active, it is recommended that you are tested regularly for STIs, particularly if the symptoms could be mistaken for something else. 


Often, the symptoms of genital herpes are so mild that you may not know that you have it. However, should symptoms develop, you may experience pain and irritation in the genital area, which is also common with thrush. However, the most prominent sign is small bumps and blisters, ulcers and scabs, which are not common with thrush.

The only way to know if you have an STD is to get tested

If thrush treatment is unsuccessful after the advised treatment period, and you have been recently sexually active, it is important to be tested for STIs. Left unchecked, STIs can cause serious health problems further down the line. Check out the Your Sexual Health website for a wide range of tests that can be taken in the privacy of your own home. 

What Causes Thrush?

Thrush is usually caused by an imbalance or overgrowth of the yeast Candida Albicans. This naturally lives in the bowel and vagina, but will occasionally become unbalanced due to a number of reasons:

  • Use of antibiotics
  • Use of oral contraceptives
  • Changes in the menstrual cycle
  • Pregnancy
  • Other illnesses such as diabetes, anemia and immune system disorders

Thrush is usually harmless and is nothing to worry about. Around 75% of women will have vaginal thrush in their lifetime. However, if you suspect you have thrush for the first time, it is recommended that you contact your GP.

Although not classified as an STI, thrush can sometimes be passed on via sex, and sexual activity can make symptoms worse. 

How is Thrush Treated?

If you are under 16 or over 60, have a weakened immune system, are pregnant, thrush keeps recurring, or you are experiencing thrush for the first time, it is recommended that you see a GP or visit a sexual health clinic. 

Usually, thrush is treated with an antifungal medication. This will be in the form of an oral tablet, a cream or a pessary. Symptoms should begin to clear within 7-14 days of treatment. 

What is a Fit to Fly Test?

If you’re thinking about a foreign holiday this summer, you might be asked to take a Fit to Fly test to prove that you do not have Coronavirus. Our guide will help you to understand why some destinations are asking for FitFly tests, what it involves, and what you need to do. Read on to learn more about private COVID Fit to Fly testing with Your Private Health in Manchester.

What is Fit to Fly Testing?

Fit to Fly tests are now required by some countries prior to travelling to prove that you do not have Coronavirus. Your Private Health offers private Fit to Fly testing in our Manchester clinic and via at-home testing kits that are done by taking a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) swab to detect the presence of COVID-19. The sample is taken from the deep throat and nose, like with regular COVID-19 testing.

What Happens at a Fit to Fly Appointment?

If you are attending an in-clinic appointment, we ask that you bring your passport with you for us to check your identity, and that the details previously provided were entered correctly as this is the information that will appear on your Fit to Fly certificate.

We have strict COVID-19 measures in place at our clinic in Manchester to ensure the safety of our clients and colleagues, therefore we also ask that you wear a face mask to attend your appointment, and try not to arrive early.

The Fit to Fly test is a standard COVID PCR test. During the test, one of our experienced medical practitioners will insert a swab into the back of your throat, and up your nose to collect respiratory materials that will be analysed for the presence of COVID-19. COVID PCR tests are mildly intrusive, and may be uncomfortable, however it is necessary in order to ensure accuracy.

What is the Turnaround Time on Fit to Fly Testing?

On our Fit to Fly testing service we offer standard two day, express one day and ultrafast same day turnaround times. Turnaround times are based on the day your sample is collected in clinic, or from when the lab received your posted sample if you ordered an at-home kit. Please bear this in mind when booking.

How Do I Get my Fit to Fly Test Results

Once our UKAS accredited lab has analysed your sample, you will receive your results via email the same day or within 24-48 hours depending on the type of test booked. This email will also include your Fit to Fly certificate for you to print at home.

If you have any questions or concerns about testing or your results, our team will be happy to help.

Please note that it is a legal requirement of Your Private Health as a provider of COVID-19 testing to share all test results with Public Health England.

How to Book a Private Fit to Fly Test

Book your private Fit to Fly test with Your Private Health via our online booking system or submitting an enquiry via our online booking form. You can also book via phone by speaking to a member of our friendly team.

When booking online, please ensure that the details you give us are correct as this information will appear on your Fit to Fly certificate. Pay particular attention to your passport number, date of birth, and full legal name.

When Should I Book a Fit to Fly Test?

It’s best to check with your airline before booking a Fit to Fly test as some destinations have specific requirements on when tests should be taken. Some destinations specify that tests should be taken between 72-96 hours prior to travelling, whilst others specify 48 hours. You should always check the requirements of the country you are visiting on when booking.

Our private Fit to Fly testing has turnaround times from same-day results to 48 hours.

What Do I Need for a Fit to Fly Test?

You’ll need to provide us with your full legal name, date of birth, and passport number to include on your Fit to Fly certificate. Other than that, we only ask that you turn up to your appointment on time and bring along your passport.

Why Choose Us

Our private COVID-19 testing services in Manchester are government approved and analysed in UKAS accredited laboratories, ensuring complete compliance and increased accuracy. Further to this, you’ll receive a personal service from Dr Bani and his team, and a free follow-up consultation if your test is positive.

Your Private Health have performed over 1000 COVID Fit to Fly tests since the beginning of the pandemic. 100% of our clients that tested negative for COVID-19 arrived at their destinations with no issues.

Other COVID-19 Testing Services:

COVID-19 PCR Testing

You may be asked to provide a negative COVID test prior to travelling, returning to work, for before attending events. Your Private Health offers regular COVID-19 PCR testing in Manchester to check for current COVID-19 infections.

This service is not suitable for people with symptoms of COVID-19, or those that suspect that they have COVID-19. In these cases, please use NHS COVID testing services.

COVID-19 Antibody Testing

Further to COVID-19 PCR testing, we also offer COVID-19 Antibody testing at our clinic in Manchester. COVID Antibody tests check for previous COVID infections. These tests are taken with a blood test, and is FDA and Public Health England approved to 98% accuracy.

Antibody testing is particularly important for research purposes, as many people that have had COVID may not have known due to being asymptomatic or having only mild symptoms that could be attributed to something else. Antibody testing allows researchers to understand the virus better, how it spreads, and treatment options.

Learn more about our private COVID-19 testing services here.