Vaginal Yeast Infection: Causes, Symptoms, Prevention & More

By choosing not to treat your yeast infection, it may worsen and create a bigger problem.

But if after having sex you develop a yeast infection that causes symptoms, it is most likely because other things are also involved. There isn't a critical need to rush to your gyno if you think you might have a yeast infection. Do not treat yourself with over-the-counter medication if you've never been diagnosed with at least one prior yeast infection by your physician. But oh, will you feel it when you use the bathroom. Data, though, is actually lacking to determine the true rate of vaginal yeast infections (4).

A vaginal yeast infection is not considered to be a sexually transmitted disease (STD), since Candida may be present in the normal vagina, and the condition does occur in celibate women. If you experience any of the following symptoms, ask a healthcare professional before using MONISTAT®, as they could be signs of another type of infection. A woman who sees her doctor about vaginal symptoms can expect to have a pelvic exam. 10 ways you’re unknowingly causing yeast infections, i’m going to see a doctor tomorrow but would like to know your thoughts. That’s not to say there aren’t other things women can do that can reduce risks for yeast infections. For chronic yeast infections, prescription strength boric acid is sometimes recommended, but it has to be obtained from a pharmacy that compounds drugs.

  • Yeast infections are extremely common.
  • Yeast infection creams, ointments, and suppositories are available either over-the-counter (without a prescription) or with a prescription.
  • While they aren't life-threatening, yeast infections are irritating -- both physically and mentally.
  • This is another name for the common vaginal yeast infection.
  • Common diaper rash in infants and toddlers is most often a superficial infection caused by the same fungi as other yeast infections in moist parts of the body.

Now, as with any other time I’ve been sick, I really appreciate having a healthy vagina and follow the suggestions that my fantastic providers gave me. Having diabetes or uncontrolled blood sugar Yeast feed on glucose in the blood, bolstering their numbers. Try sleeping without underwear. About 5-8% of the reproductive age female population will have four or more episodes of symptomatic Candida infection per year; this condition is called recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis (RVVC). Can a yeast infection be prevented?

Having small amounts of Candida on the skin and inside the mouth, digestive tract, and vagina is normal. Things to consider The risk of self-treatment is that your symptoms may be caused by a type of vaginal infection other than a yeast infection, such as bacterial vaginosis or a sexually transmitted infection (STI). Over-the-counter options include clotrimazole, miconazole, and tioconazole. Vaginal yeast infections are typically caused by the yeast species Candida albicans. These infections are easily treatable. Recognizing the signs and symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection is the first step to getting treatment.

Frothy, grayish discharge suggests it’s bacterial vaginosis (BV), the most common type of vaginitis. The warm, moist folds of the foreskin are the perfect environment for yeast to thrive. Small amounts of yeast can be found in the normal vagina. Half of those women will have at least one recurrence. Vaginal yeast infection. Talk to your doctor about all of your yeast infection treatment options.

Menstrual blood raises the vaginal pH, causing the number of yeast cells to decrease because they can't grow in the pH present during menstruation.

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In longstanding infection, the area underneath the nail may turn white or yellow, and the nail plate may separate from the nail bed (onycholysis). Cranberry juice has been long known to help get rid of yeast infections, but it can also cause the problem in the first place. Yeast is a fungus that normally lives in the vagina in small numbers. Severe yeast infections may also cause redness and tears or cracks (fissures) in the wall of the vagina.

The use of douches or perfumed vaginal hygiene sprays may also increase a woman's risk of developing a vaginal yeast infection. It is also complicated if coupled with pregnancy, poorly controlled diabetes, poor immune function, or the thrush is not caused by Candida albicans. It can make it hard or painful to swallow. But sometimes your yeast grows too much and leads to an infection. The symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection are familiar to many women: Sepsis kills and disables millions and requires early suspicion and treatment for survival.

  • Can a yeast infection go away on its own?
  • Sometimes an oral anti-yeast medicine is used.
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You should also only use antibiotics when necessary. Uncomplicated yeast infection There are two ways to treat an uncomplicated yeast infection: This includes whether you’ve had yeast infections before. Topical antifungal creams are used to treat this condition. Penile inflammation (balanitis): Non-latex condoms are available to purchase online. And it may seem like more of a hassle than taking a pill. They can cause redness and irritation on your penis or scrotum.

Don't clean it at all—you should never put any cleaning products up there. It’s often impossible to pinpoint the reason someone gets a yeast infection. Yeast infections. The bottom line is, if your symptoms don't go away, you need to be seen. That includes anything from an allergic reaction to skin conditions like dermatitis to STDs. What can happen if you don't get treated for a yeast infection? Common symptoms of a yeast infection include vaginal itching, burning, and irritation.

They may also ask if you’ve ever had an STI.

Next Steps

Sometimes the rash may not cause any symptoms, but usually the infection causes a red, raw, itching, burning, or sometimes painful rash on the head of the penis. What are yeast infection symptoms? No alternative medicine therapies have been proved to treat vaginal yeast infections. That’s why we take our time to read every comment before it is posted. A PlushCare doctor can help advise by phone or video chat which steps to take and even prescribe necessary medication, (yes, an online doctor can prescribe medication!)

Male yeast infection: Doctors often diagnose yeast infections based on a woman’s medical history and findings from her pelvic exam. All bodies have Candida — not just the female body. How to clean your vagina the right way? There are many lifestyle prevention tips that can reduce your risk of a yeast infection. While larger, well-designed trials are needed, one review concluded that taking a probiotic alone or in combination with conventional antifungal treatment may be beneficial.

Can Vaginal Yeast Infections Be Prevented?

Oral yeast infections occur when there’s a shift in the normal balance of microbes in the oral cavity, leading to an overgrowth of yeast. You won’t “catch” the infection by air or by using the same shower as someone with the infection, for example. Thrush is candidiasis inside the mouth. Treatments for yeast infections soothe the affected area and target the overgrown Candida fungus.

The type of discharge also yields important clues, he says. (1) Candidiasis of the Skin (Cutaneous Candidiasis or Cutaneous Moniliasis). Some women also have a thick, clumpy, white discharge that has no odor and looks a little like cottage cheese. You can also get a yeast infection after taking antibiotics, since these medications kill both “bad” bacteria and “good” bacteria that keep yeast in check. Left untreated, yeast infections will usually go away on their own, but the severe itching can be hard to tolerate for some. Many who do survive are left with life-changing effects, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), chronic pain and fatigue, organ dysfunction (organs don’t work properly) and/or amputations.

What Causes A Vaginal Yeast Infection?

Your health care provider may tell you that you need to take medicine every month to prevent yeast infections. How are vaginal yeast infections diagnosed? Yeast infection in men While vaginal yeast infections are more common, it’s possible for men to get yeast infections, too. If you practice good genital hygiene, you can help prevent infection.

This is a very serious type of Candida infection affecting the blood, brain, bones, eyes, heart, or other parts of the body, according to the U. “In my experience, it can take a good 24 hours, sometimes longer, to actually feel better, and that can be a very long, itchy 24 hours, whereas a cream can have more quick relief,” she says. The nurse practitioner (NP) tested my discharge, found it was indeed a yeast infection, and prescribed me a 3-day suppository. If the baby also has thrush, it’s a good bet that the rash is caused by an overgrowth of yeast. It's easy to confuse the symptoms of a yeast infection with those of some STDs and other vaginal infections. Identifying the fungus can help your doctor prescribe more effective treatment for recurrent yeast infections.

  • Instead of using a salt solution, the KOH test uses potassium hydroxide.
  • Sometimes women with yeast infections also experience pain with urination or while having sex.
  • Symptoms of infection of the male genitalia (balanitis thrush) include red skin around the head of the penis, swelling, irritation, itchiness and soreness of the head of the penis, thick, lumpy discharge under the foreskin, unpleasant odour, difficulty retracting the foreskin (phimosis), and pain when passing urine or during sex.
  • Learn more about when antibiotics work and when they should be avoided.

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It does not have a bad smell. Tampons can absorb the medicine. More than 20 types of Candida can cause infection with Candida albicans being the most common. Yeast infections of the vagina or penis can be treated with creams or medicated suppositories. Lopez JEM (2020). Some women (about 5%) have recurrent yeast infections. Treatments for yeast infections are easy to access and use.

If you are experiencing chronic or recurring yeast infections, your doctor may diagnose and prescribe treatment for non-Candida albicans yeast infections. But there are some things that may increase the chance of developing a yeast infection, including pregnancy, uncontrolled diabetes, taking estrogen, and being in an immunocompromised state due to something like HIV or cancer (2,5). Talk to your doctor before you try unproven home treatment methods, such as applying tea tree oil in the vagina or taking garlic supplements. Taking antibiotics kills good bacteria with the bad and can leave a woman more vulnerable to developing a yeast infection. If you instead choose to self-treat with an over-the-counter antifungal product, be sure to see your doctor if your symptoms continue, if you develop other symptoms, if you have a risk of an STI, or if you are not sure whether you have a yeast infection. The symptoms of a yeast infection may include one or more of the following:

Always wipe from front to back after using the restroom. Candida overgrowth in babies can also cause diaper rash. Vaginal yeast infections are common among teen girls, and about 75% of all females will have one at some point. Having diabetes, especially if your blood sugars are not well controlled and tend to be high. Menopausal women are the group most prone to yeast infections, but they can affect anyone. Douching, sprays, powders, and soaps. Make a list of questions to ask your doctor.

Vaginal Yeast Infection Home Remedies

While yeast infections may go away on their own, treatment is usually a preferable option, as the symptoms can be uncomfortable to deal with. Otherwise, you're likely to see a family medicine doctor or gynecologist. In fact, if you're not super sensitive, you may not realize you have one at all.

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– Even if your symptoms start out mild, choosing not to treat them could make the problem worse. 10 top causes of yeast infections that guys need to know about – manscaped. Women with lowered immunity — such as from corticosteroid therapy or HIV infection — are more likely to get yeast infections. He or she may do some tests to see if your yeast infections are being caused by another health problem, such as diabetes. Are there any over-the-counter products that will treat my condition?


You would need another prescription medicine to treat the infection. What are the types of yeast infections? A woman may also experience redness and swelling of the vulvar tissue, painful urination, or pain during intercourse. Besides discomfort or irritation and itchiness, there are a number of symptoms that may occur with a yeast infection: If your symptoms continue, you can use nonprescription medicine. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates nearly 75 percent of women are likely to contract one yeast infection in their lifetime, with up to 45 percent of women experiencing recurring ones. Left untreated, these infections can cause other health problems.

Change pads or tampons often. Babies born to a mother with a vaginal yeast infection can get a mouth infection (thrush). It generally causes your vagina and vulva (the tissues at the opening of the vagina) to itch. Changing pads and tampons too infrequently Feminine hygiene products can keep extra moisture around—a perfect environment for bacterial overgrowth.

  • However, it is a good idea to complete the full course of any treatment, as recommended.
  • Antifungal medicines get rid of yeast infections in most people.
  • What signs and symptoms should I watch out for?
  • Still, penile yeast infections are most commonly caused by having unprotected vaginal intercourse with a woman who has the infection too.

Alternative Yeast Infection Treatments

The groin area is especially prone to Candida overgrowth because of skin folds and moisture. We greatly appreciate your presence here and welcome your participation 24/7/365. Ask questions about your medical history.

Many generic medicines are now available to treat vaginal yeast infections. Using scented sanitary products and douching can upset the healthy balance of bacteria in the vagina and make yeast infections more likely. There may be a cottage cheese-like discharge under the foreskin. Vaginal lubricants or a small dose of estrogen can help in this case. Not all women will experience noticeable symptoms of a yeast infection. Talk to your doctor to make sure you are choosing the right treatment option for your yeast infection. Yeast diaper rash:

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Treatment options for yeast infections commonly recommended by Dignity Health doctors include: To help reduce your chance of a yeast infection: Or your doctor may prescribe a medicine to treat the infection. Simple steps to treat a yeast infection naturally, the first culprit is modern-day farming practices. – may be a sign of hemorrhoids or other genital infection. The wet mount can also help rule out other infections, including bacterial vaginosis and trichomoniasis. Yeast infections are an uncomfortably common problem for women, affecting three out of every four. It can give you the illusion that you’re treating it while another problem continues to develop. It may not be clear whether you have a yeast infection or over-the-counter antifungal treatments don’t work.

You can pass a yeast infection during oral or vaginal intercourse. How is a yeast infection treated? The exact opposite can happen too, where a man might develop a penile yeast infection from a woman who has a vaginal yeast infection. A Hungarian study of 370 patients with confirmed vaginal yeast infections identified the following types of infection: Applying plain yogurt to the area may help to restore balance and reduce irritation. The NP then prescribed me double-duty: Your doctor will perform a pelvic exam, which will include inspecting your vagina and vulva to see if there are external signs of infection, such as swelling and redness, and cracks in the skin of the vulva.

Report your symptoms to your doctor if: The sooner you know, the sooner you can get back to a healthy life. Certain bacteria (lactobacillus) act to prevent an overgrowth of yeast. Wet bathing suits and workout clothing should be removed as soon as possible and washed prior to next use. Under normal circumstances, a vaginal yeast infection is not serious and can be treated with medications.


Use of antibiotics. There are, unfortunately, many supposed remedies patients try, “from things as unique as yogurt in the vagina to peroxide-soaked tampons … (to) tea tree oils,” Parnell says. Although this yeast is a normal part of the vaginal environment, too much of it can cause uncomfortable symptoms. Home remedies Many women choose to use home remedies to treat mild to moderate yeast infections. Using feminine hygiene sprays, talcs, or perfumes in the vaginal area. Some doctors recommend adding yogurt and/or cranberry juice to the diet to help restore a normal vaginal environment that will not favor the overgrowth of fungus.

Wearing cotton underwear might help reduce the chances of getting a yeast infection. Next, your doctor places an instrument (speculum) into your vagina to hold the vaginal walls open to examine the vagina and cervix — the lower, narrower part of your uterus. Yeast naturally lives on the skin and in the mouth, gut, and vagina.

How do I know for sure if I have a yeast infection? Fluconazole (Diflucan) is a single pill taken by mouth. Experts advise against taking oral antifungal medication, such as fluconazole (Diflucan), during pregnancy. It most commonly affects women, but men can get it too.

Your doctor can give you the right diagnosis so that you can be treated appropriately.

Is It Safe To Use Over-the-counter Medicines For Yeast Infections?

Wait, your sweet tooth may be causing issues with your — vagina? Infections in skinfolds (intertriginous infections) or in the navel usually cause a bright red rash, sometimes with breakdown of skin. Your doctor might prescribe an antifungal medication taken daily for up to two weeks, followed by once a week for six months. They will first collect a sample of vaginal discharge with a cotton swab, which will then be sent off to a lab for study under a microscope. Yeast infection essential oils Essential oils have garnered a lot of attention in the last several years as “natural” remedies to common medical ailments. Both the vaginal and oral treatments have similar cure rates— around 80-90% (6,8). Itching should go away, which will alleviate much of the discomfort associated with the infection. A vaginal yeast infection is NOT a sexually transmitted disease (STD).

Risk Factors

Call your doctor immediately if you: Other health conditions, such as sexually transmitted diseases, have symptoms that are similar to a yeast infection. If you’re having recurring yeast infections or problems getting rid of a yeast infection with conventional treatment, then a different version of Candida might be the cause. If you have a severe infection or have frequent recurrences, your doctor may prescribe a longer course of treatment with Diflucan or other antifungal medications. If you are experiencing the symptoms described in this article, call your doctor now. If your vaginal symptoms are not typical of a vaginal yeast infection, your doctor can look for signs of yeast or other organisms using a wet mount test of vaginal discharge.

However, a vaginal yeast infection can be a sign an underlying, more serious condition or can lead to serious complications, especially if left untreated. This test can confirm that you have a yeast infection. Avoid frequent or prolonged use of antibiotics if possible.

How Can You Protect Yourself From Contracting A Yeast Infection From Your Sexual Partner?

It usually first appears as a thick white or yellow vaginal discharge (leukorrhea) with itching and redness of the female genitalia (vagina and vulva). Most healthy vaginas have yeast. A sex partner of someone diagnosed with a yeast infection does not need to be treated, unless they are experiencing symptoms of a yeast infection themself (6). Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines, 2020. The rates then decreased in the 1950s following the development of nystatin. A vaginal yeast infection, also known as vaginal candidiasis, genital candidiasis, or vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC), is an infection involving a type of fungus, or yeast. My house is nearly 100 years old and not great at preserving heat, so sometimes, admittedly, I would go a few days without showering. However, a positive fungal culture does not always mean that Candida is causing symptoms because some women can have Candida in the vagina without having any symptoms.

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Are not sure your symptoms are caused by a vaginal yeast infection. Some anti-yeast vaginal medications that are oil-based may weaken latex condoms making them more likely to break. Consult your doctor before you decide to go this route. Always finish treatment, even if the signs of a yeast infection go away. BTW, if you’re having frequent infections (3 times a year or more), you should definitely go see your provider and find out what’s up. They’ll also look at the surrounding area for external signs of infection. Yeast infections occur when the normal balance of yeast on the skin and in the body becomes thrown off.

This is because vaginal infections caused by bacteria, as well as some sexually transmitted infections (STI), may have symptoms very similar to those caused by yeast, but they require different treatments. Yeast infections – health services, the vagina is a self-cleaning oven, so the best thing is nothing if you can. Yeast infections typically produce a thick, white vaginal discharge that’s often described as having a curd-like consistency that resembles cottage cheese. Trying to treat another non-yeast-related condition with antifungals will not only be ineffective. But 53 percent of women don't have a clue on how to deal with them, and two-thirds don't know how to cure them. Always see your healthcare provider for a diagnosis. They aren’t contagious, and can’t spread to another person during sex. Yeast infections in the skin folds can be treated with anti-yeast powders. (6) Chronic Mucocutaneous Candidiasis (Candida Granuloma).

When this yeast increases it can cause an infection. Some mild yeast infections will go away on there own in a few days. Many girls find that yeast infections tend to show up right before they get their periods because of the hormonal changes that come with the menstrual cycle. Yeast infections occur when the balance of organisms in your vagina is upset, and the amount of yeast grows too much, causing an infection. Though yeast infections have no major negative effect on pregnancy, they are often more difficult to control during pregnancy, causing significant discomfort for you. How do you get yeast infections? The prescription medication, fluconazole, is a single pill that is taken by mouth (6). Instead, stay nice and fresh with a mild soap (like Summer's Eve Feminine Wash for Sensitive Skin, $13; ) and grab some fragrance-free detergent when it comes time to wash your underwear.

Living With Yeast Infections

Yeast infection. Sexual intercourse may be painful due to inflammation and dryness. You may be noticing an increase in the amount of thin, white, odd smelling discharge. Treating a vaginal yeast infection can relieve symptoms within a few days. How a medicine can be administered. If sexual intercourse is painful, avoid it. Three out of four women will get a vaginal yeast infection during their life.

After using the toilet, wipe from front to back to avoid spreading yeast or bacteria from your anus to the vagina or urinary tract. What are the treatments for an infant vaginal yeast infection? These plant-based products can be powerful, but so far, no research has shown that essential oils work better for yeast infections than conventional methods. Probiotics may alos be helpful. BV Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the most common type of vaginal infection in women between the ages of 15 and 44. Penile candidiasis most often affects men with diabetes, uncircumcised men, or men whose female sex partners have vaginal candidiasis.

These bacteria produce hydrogen peroxide that kills the excess Candida.

Before you choose not to treat the problem, you should know exactly what it is. Infection of the vagina or vulva may cause severe itching, burning, soreness, irritation, and a whitish or whitish-gray cottage cheese-like discharge. But if you’re uncertain whether or not you have a yeast infection, public health officials stress the importance of meeting with your doctor first for an accurate diagnosis. Many women prefer to use home remedies to get rid of yeast infections, especially if they have had a yeast infection before. They're not chronic. Vaginal yeast infections are not sexually transmitted.

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If symptoms develop in a sexual partner, a doctor should be contacted to decide on the most effective treatment. Vaginal candidiasis can very rarely cause congenital candidiasis in newborns. Recurring vaginal yeast infections can be difficult to prevent or cure. Unlike a yeast infection, you’ll need a prescription antibiotic to clear up BV. In general, unscented products and non-soap cleansers are healthiest for your vulva, but they don’t specifically affect yeast. Alternatively, an oral antifungal, fluconazole (Diflucan), can be used in one single dose.

Yeast infections most commonly refer to vaginal infections, but can also occur in other places in your body, such as your mouth or armpits. Available as a one-, three-, or seven-day suppository or three- or seven-day cream. A fungal infection in the lungs may cause coughing, fever, chest pain, and muscle aches. About a quarter of women will experience abraded skin or fissures in the skin, she adds. Cranberry juice might be doing more harm than good.

In other small studies, vaginal use of probiotic tablets seemed to be helpful in preventing future infections. Things that may encourage an excess growth of vaginal yeast include: A lab test can identify what type of Candida you have. Know how you can contact your provider if you have questions. How is a yeast infection diagnosed? Other species pathogenic in humans include C.