Frequently Asked Questions: Vaginal Yeast Infections

Sometimes a menstrual period will relieve the symptoms of a mild yeast infection. Douches and vaginal sprays don’t help yeast infections. Some things that can cause changes in your vagina’s environment are: That's because the signs – itching and burning of the vulva, pain during sex and a white, lumpy, odorless discharge – are similar to bacterial vaginosis, an STI that can increase your risk for contracting other STIs, including HIV, and may lead to problems with pregnancy. What you need to know about flagyl, neutropenia is the condition when you have low levels of certain white blood cells, called neutrophils, that help fight off infections. AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses. When should I call my healthcare provider? To know for sure whether that’s true, we need to have studies following more women over a greater length of time.

It may include weekly treatment with oral fluconazole for 6 months or weekly treatment with vaginal clotrimazole.

For example, if the infection is a different kind, such as bacterial vaginosis (the most common cause of abnormal vaginal discharge), rather than thrush. Are pregnant and have symptoms of a vaginal infection or a urinary tract infection (UTI). ’” Avoid using anything, like douches or vinegar or steaming, inside of the vagina. Wear underwear that helps keep your genital area dry and doesn't hold in warmth and moisture. Cutting out sugar or bread: Some types of “yeast” infections are harder to treat and are caused by other species. Small intestinal fungal overgrowth, the blood test measures levels of three separate antibodies (IgM, IgG, IgA) that the immune system creates if candida is present, as well as levels of candida antigen, created when a particle of a candida breakdown product enters the bloodstream and triggers an antibody response. However, douching can disrupt your natural vaginal microbiome and, because of that disruption, can actually make you more susceptible to vaginal infection.

Are not sure your symptoms are caused by a vaginal yeast infection. If you're not feeling better within a few days of finishing treatment, call your doctor. But when the body produces too much yeast, leading to an overgrowth, infection can occur. Not only will you alleviate uncomfortable symptoms, but you can also reduce the chances of the infection becoming more widespread in your body. Women with vaginal yeast infections can have swelling and redness in the vaginal area accompanied by a thick, white discharge. Women with weak immune systems or other medical problems may need longer treatment.

If you see no improvement within three days, or if symptoms worsen or come back after treatment, you should contact your healthcare provider again.

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Recurrent vaginal yeast infections tend to involve non– C. ET, Monday — FridayOWH and the OWH helpline do not see patients and are unable to: If you are sick or taking antibiotics, it can multiply and cause an infection. See your doctor if your yeast infection symptoms don’t improve after your period ends.

Especially if you are prone to getting yeast infections. Your doctor can also give you tips on relieving burning and itching. However, a rash that persists may be due to an overgrowth of Candida yeast. Vaginal yeast infections can also occur as a result of injury to the inner vagina, such as after chemotherapy. Yeast infections can happen to any girl. Your doctor may also prescribe oral antifungal medication.

Also, if the denture is always covering the roof of the mouth, the tissues are not cleaned of any yeast that may build up during the day. This is because vaginal medicine isn't absorbed into your body and only affects the genital area. For one woman who's really sensitive, a small colonization can cause a lot of itching and burning. Three out of 4 women will have a yeast infection at some point in their life, and most are mild. Topical antifungals are safe to use during pregnancy. 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. Sometimes an oral anti-yeast medicine is used. How can I prevent future yeast infections after I finish treatment?

Poor diet and lack of sleep may also increase the risk.

Ringworm of the Scalp

The high estrogen levels caused by pregnancy or hormone therapy can also cause it. It isn't anything like an STD. Someone who is experiencing symptoms of a yeast infection can try an over-the-counter vaginal cream or suppository, such as: You're more likely to develop an infection if any of the following applies to you: See your doctor for a proper diagnosis if you think you have a penile yeast infection.

  • Gunter, who’s also a fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
  • When something happens to change the balance of these organisms, yeast can grow too much and cause symptoms.
  • So far there is no evidence for this connection.
  • In men, it affects the head of the penis.
  • What causes yeast infections during pregnancy?
  • This ensures that you aren’t just experiencing a normal part of your menstrual cycle.


This candida fungus is responsible for “candidiasis” infections of the vagina, mouth, and skin. Women who have trichomoniasis are at an increased risk of infection with other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). 2 Because taking antibiotics can lead to vaginal candidiasis, take these medicines only when prescribed and exactly as your healthcare provider tells you. Chronic sinusitis, 6°F is the optimum temperature for Candida albicans and Candida tropicalis. BV is said to have a strong fishy odor too. Less commonly, it may appear as red irritated areas inside the mouth.

Uncomplicated thrush is when there are less than four episodes in a year, the symptoms are mild or moderate, it is likely caused by Candida albicans, and there are no significant host factors such as poor immune function. How do I treat yeast infections? In extreme cases, you can get fissures or sores on your vagina or vulva. Yeast infection after sex While it’s possible to develop a yeast infection after having sex, a yeast infection itself is not an STI. In these cases, sexual contact can transmit a yeast infection from one person to another. A topical steroid like one percent hydrocortisone applied around the vaginal opening can also help relieve itching, she says. Keep areas where skin rubs up against skin dry and try to reduce friction. Fluctuations in hormones are thought to be a cause of yeast infections before your period, causing imbalances in healthy bacteria in the vagina.

It will also depend on how severe the condition is. But she says she sees patients every week who swear they have them and are desperate for relief. Douching is a risk factor for infection because it can strip away “good” bacteria that protect against yeast overgrowth. If you have a vaginal yeast infection, you will most likely experience one or more of the following symptoms: This infection is also called candidiasis. Candida is normally found in small amounts on the skin and inside the mouth, digestive tract, and vagina without causing any disease. Vaginal yeast infections can cause: That test can tell your doctor whether there is an overgrowth of yeast.

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Herbal extracts: The groin area is especially prone to Candida overgrowth because of skin folds and moisture. This means they get more than 4 vaginal yeast infections in a year. Candidiasis (thrush, yeast infection), like other imidazole- and triazole-class antifungals, fluconazole inhibits the fungal cytochrome P450 enzyme 14α-demethylase. And so the higher your blood sugar typically is, the more prone you are to vaginal microbiome disruptions and getting yeast infections. That’s when yeast can proliferate and cause infection. And then, lucky you, another yeast infection.

Side effects can include nausea, headaches, and belly pain. Always see your healthcare provider for a diagnosis. Just another reason not to use antibiotics unless you truly need to. It could be something as simple as a run away script or learning how to better use E-utilities, http: It almost makes you automatically clench up your vaginal muscles, as if that could prevent unwanted intruders from disrupting your sexual health, doesn't it?

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When treating an uncomplicated yeast infection, a short-course of vaginal therapy is normally sufficient. If you’re concerned about transmission, talk to your doctor about all the ways yeast infections could be contagious in your situation. Ross also says that those Goop-sponsored vaginal steams and yoni eggs may be rooted in indigenous traditions, which can give them historical value, but they haven’t had enough medical research to confirm or deny their efficacy. Some anti-yeast vaginal creams are sold over the counter (without a prescription) in pharmacies. What are the symptoms? Your doctor will ask about your medical history. There are other office-based tests for evaluating vaginal discharge.

This can happen if: If you are thinking about using nonprescription treatment, see: These are available over-the-counter or with a prescription.

Vaginal Yeast Infection Prevention

Using a yogurt without any added sugar is essential. Tight clothing/new clothing detergent – Wearing tight clothing, especially pants and underwear can restrict airflow to your vagina. Candidal vulvovaginitis in pregnancy should be treated with intravaginal clotrimazole or nystatin for at least 7 days. It is often reported that 3 in 4 women will experience at least one vaginal yeast infection in their lifetime and 1 in 2 will have more than one. Signs of trichomoniasis may include a yellow-gray or green vaginal discharge. Therefore, it is important for you to have previously had at least one yeast infection diagnosed by a health care provider so that the provider can prescribe an appropriate medication for your symptoms.

Taking corticosteroid medicines sometimes also weakens the immune system and increases the risk for yeast infections. Keeping the area clean and dry may help prevent an infection, but if symptoms do show up, a doctor can treat the infection. Sugar is added to many processed foods so read the label to find out if sugar has been added to foods that you are eating.

Sexual contact can spread it, but women who aren’t sexually active can also get them.

What Are The Symptoms Of Yeast Infections?

Women with HIV—especially women with low CD4 counts—are particularly prone to getting them. People used to think that the birth control pill could cause these disruptions. Some women think that eating foods with lactobacillus organisms, such as yogurt or acidophilus milk, will help prevent yeast infections. Vaginal itching won’t kill you, but it can definitely ruin your day. Penile inflammation (balanitis): Wash your vulva with an unscented, gentle cleanser, like dermatologist-beloved, super-cost-effective Cetaphil.

If you have a weak immune system, treatment might be more difficult. Other women are really experiencing irritation on their vulva, which is the vaginal opening and lips. But sexual contact sometimes leads to yeast infections — your body chemistry can have a bad reaction to another person’s natural genital yeast and bacteria, which causes yeast to grow. Borges S, Silva J, Teixeira P. Yeast thrives on sugar, so eating too much of it may increase your chance of developing the obnoxious infection, says Laurie Birkholz, M.

Complicated Yeast Infection

Because these forms of vaginitis are caused by imbalances in the vagina, try to be conscious of anything you are doing that could disrupt the microbiome in that part of your body. While they aren't life-threatening, yeast infections are irritating -- both physically and mentally. How can my dentist treat a yeast infection? Other anti-yeast vaginal creams need a prescription. But that balance can be disrupted. But if after having sex you develop a yeast infection that causes symptoms, it is most likely because other things are also involved. Science has not backed all home remedies, but recent studies have medically tested the following methods:

If you have risk factors for an STI, discuss your symptoms with your doctor before using a nonprescription medicine. Yeast is found in the vaginas of most people at some point in their lives, and also lives on the skin, in the mouth, and intestines (1). Also, women with suppressed immune systems (for example, those taking cortisone-related medications such as prednisone) develop vaginal yeast infections more frequently than women with normal immunity. Continue to have symptoms despite home treatment with a nonprescription medicine. Vaginal yeast infections can increase with: Which explains why Monistat, the makers of a treatment cream for yeast infections, launched their Time for TMI campaign — with it being such a common infection, there's no reason for you to not understand what's happening with your vagina.

Other infections can cause similar symptoms but require different treatments. The discomfort you’re having could be caused by something entirely different, and starting medication for a yeast infection incorrectly could delay your treatment. Whether oral or vaginal medicine is recommended. Infection occurs when too much yeast begins to grow. You can lower your risk of getting a yeast infection by: However, they can develop into more serious infections in some cases. A woman is more likely to get yeast infections if she is pregnant or has diabetes.

Less Common Infection Types

These symptoms can include: ” Or maybe they come in because they say, “Well, sex is all of a sudden really painful. When you’re immunosuppressed for whatever reason, you don’t necessarily have the defense cells that you need to fight infection, and so you may become more prone to vaginal infections. BV has similar symptoms as a yeast infection, including discharge, burning, and itching. What are the symptoms of bacterial vaginosis?

Control diabetes. Choosing a treatment is a personal decision, but some get rid of infections quicker than others. Yeast infections are extremely common: There’s evidence to suggest that a yeast infection may be able to spread between sexual partners, but it’s rare.

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They're not chronic. It can cause cracks to appear at the corners of the mouth. He or she will also give you a physical exam. Menopause – Hormonal changes in a woman’s body can throw off that delicate balance between bacteria and yeast.

These treatments include more doses of fluconazole taken by mouth or other medicines applied inside the vagina, such as boric acid, nystatin, or flucytosine. If you get symptoms of infection, such as warm, reddened skin or drainage, tell your healthcare provider. Looking at more recent data, however, we know that’s not true. Wet clothing in general, Butler Tobah said, is difficult to study. Your vaginal microbiome isn’t typically anything to think about…until you get a yeast infection. Oral thrush: symptoms, causes and treatments, thrush in an infant's mouth can spread to the breast of the nursing mother. Here are some treatments you may have, depending on where the infection is: Certain spermicides, like the spermicidal jelly nonoxynol-9, can potentially cause disruptions. If you are pregnant, see a doctor before starting any treatment.

Having lowered immunity makes you more susceptible to getting yeast infections, according to the Mayo Clinic.

What should I do if I get repeat yeast infections?

A variety of lifestyle factors may contribute to the development of a vaginal yeast infection. Candida tropicalis endocarditis, candida species are common human fungal pathogens that cause a wide range of clinical diseases. The hormone estrogen helps bacteria called lactobacilli to grow. Candida species also cause thrush and candidal intertrigo (Candida is commonly found in the mouth but not on the skin, except in warm, moist areas). Unfortunately, having sex can also promote yeast infections, although yeast infections aren’t considered a sexually transmitted infection, the Mayo Clinic notes. Vaginal yeast infections are common among growing girls, and about 75% of all females will have a yeast infection at some point in their lives.

They’re convenient, but if you don’t have a yeast infection they may not give you relief, and, if you use them too much, you could kill off good bacteria and end up with even more yeast overgrowth. All of our visits with patients are confidential and convenient and require as little as a phone or video consultation. Several studies show that it has anti-yeast effects. Are sure your symptoms are caused by a vaginal yeast infection.

A Q&A with Leah Millheiser, MD

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says oils in these creams and suppositories can weaken latex in condoms and diaphragms. What can happen if you don't get treated for a yeast infection? Sometimes vaginitis—or vaginal inflammation—can be so mild you may not think anything out of the norm is happening. What about pregnancy? An example is estrogen, which controls the function of female reproductive organs. Antibiotic use.

A secondary bacterial infection can happen, so monitor for spreading redness, or swelling, or pain. There are over-the-counter creams that you can use on your vulva to help calm the irritation. If you experience a yeast infection after douching, reconsider your hygiene habits to eliminate the use of douches. While you can pass a yeast infection to another person, it’s not contagious in the same way as other infections are. Vaginal yeast infections, vaginal infections are caused by a Candida fungus growth, which is a result of an imbalance within the vagina. However, douching also flushes out the "friendly" bacteria that fight yeast, so doing it regularly isn't a good idea. Just because you have vaginal itching doesn't mean you have a yeast infection, Gunter says. All yeast infections are relatively easy to treat if identified early on.

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However, it is possible for men to develop symptoms of skin irritation of the penis from a yeast infection after sexual intercourse with an infected partner, although this is not always the case. These changes make the skin more sensitive and any irritation can provide breeding ground for bacteria and yeast. It’s important to know that the creams may weaken latex condoms, causing them to break. There is some evidence that it might be possible to contract a yeast infection from a sexual partner, but it is uncommon. This leads to a yeast infection. It’s also found in your digestive system.

  • Three out of four women are diagnosed with a yeast infection at some point in their life, according to a recent survey.
  • Women may notice some redness and swelling of the vulva.
  • Over-the-counter treatments make it possible to initiate treatment without seeing a doctor.
  • The good news is that these infections are usually easy to treat and get rid of.
  • However, eating yogurt alone will not cure or prevent vaginal yeast infections.
  • However, if the issue is persistent—or if you’re allergic to the over-the-counter stuff—you might need to see your doctor for a prescription.
  • When the pH is basic, you start to see symptoms of bacterial vaginosis, including a fishy vaginal odor that women may notice more prominently during their period and after sexual intercourse when a man ejaculates inside of them.


Symptoms develop when large numbers of a fungus called Candida are present in the vagina. Without treatment, a UTI can lead to more serious complications of the kidneys. That, plus the fact that getting it on, may delay the amount of time it takes you to heal (sex can cause the medical cream you're using to pull a disappearing act), so you may want to wait until you've been treating your infection for a few days before engaging in anything hot and heavy. More than half - 53% - of young women say they don’t know how to deal with a yeast infection, and two out of three women (66%) don’t know it can be cured with an over-the-counter treatment. It is also complicated if coupled with pregnancy, poorly controlled diabetes, poor immune function, or the thrush is not caused by Candida albicans.

You can use an antifungal cream or a suppository that you put into your vagina. Cure, meet disease. If you think you may have a yeast infection, it is reasonable to try a single course of over-the-counter treatment, but if that doesn’t work, or if it makes your symptoms worse, contact your health care provider for guidance on treatment. Not only can it fight an active infection, but one study found that women who ate a cup of yogurt every day were three times less likely to develop yeast infections than women who didn't eat yogurt. So, why the disconnect? A vaginal yeast infection is not considered a sexually-transmitted infection (STD), but 12% to 15% of men develop symptoms such as itching and penile rash following sexual contact with an infected partner. These occur when you get overgrowth of your normal candida. Doctors often prescribe a weekly dose of fluconazole (Diflucan) taken for six months.

There may be burning, irritation, redness, and swelling of the vulva. Vulvovaginal candidiasis section of Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines 2020. People can also make their own by putting no more than 600 milligrams of boric acid into a clean gel capsule. Newborn thrush vs milk tongue: here how to tell the difference. Before your visit, write down questions you want answered. Those medicines are effective almost 90 percent of the time, and the chance you had the wrong diagnosis is greater than the chance that the treatment didn’t work. – As your body adjusts to a new regimen of contraceptives or hormone treatment, you may experience yeast infections. Certain bacteria (lactobacillus) act to prevent an overgrowth of yeast. Yeast naturally lives on the skin and in the body of humans.

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Doctors recommend only using water and washing only the outside of the genital area, as soaps and deodorants can upset the balance of yeast and bacteria. Supplements of Lactobacillus acidophilus, available at most health food stores, can also help maintain a healthy balance of bacteria in the body and reduce the risk of yeast infections. Call the OWH HELPLINE: To know for certain whether a long time spent in a wet bathing suit can cause a yeast infection, she said, researchers would have to perform a controlled study: Yeast infection creams, ointments, and suppositories are available either over-the-counter (without a prescription) or with a prescription. This article will look at the causes, symptoms, and diagnosis of yeast infections, as well as medication and home remedies. Douching does not cure yeast infections, and may actually make them worse.

Never self-treat unless you’ve talked to your health care provider. Can vaginal yeast infections be prevented? ” There’s no test that says, “Yes. The use of douches or perfumed vaginal hygiene sprays may also increase a woman's risk of developing a vaginal yeast infection. If you have an overgrowth of yeast, you may have a yeast infection.

Here are some yeast infection myths and misconceptions regarding treatment and prevention. The onset of a vaginal yeast infection will typically be marked by the following symptoms: ” you should understand the causes of yeast infection, the stages of yeast infection and your options for treatment. Men rarely develop yeast infections, since the penis doesn't provide the warm moist environment in which yeast flourish. If you use a cream, then you should not use tampons during the treatment since it will absorb the medication and make it less effective. Vaginal yeast infections can be treated with medicines such as pills or creams, ovules, or ointments. Most of the time, that means doing absolutely nothing.

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A UTI is a bacterial infection that affects the urinary system. Girls who have diabetes that isn't controlled are more likely to get yeast infections. How is yeast infection diagnosed? As you begin a treatment schedule…: Girls who have diabetes that isn’t controlled are more likely to get yeast infections. How common are vaginal yeast infections? 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.


So it’s a good idea to buy mild and fragrance-free bath and cleansing products for your daughter. To use tea tree oil for a yeast infection, pour a few drops across the top and sides of a tampon and insert the tampon into the vagina. Black-headed nightingale-thrush bird photo call and song/ catharus mexicanus (mal.(acocychla) mexicana). Physician assistants. The fungus candida albicans is responsible for most vaginal yeast infections.

Q What can disrupt the microbiome and cause infections and overgrowths? During pregnancy and while using hormonal contraceptives (birth control). Youtube, vaginal yeast infections are often self-diagnosed based on symptoms and medical history. In addition, “maintenance” yeast infection medication may be recommended to prevent future infections. Do not use tampons while you are using the vaginal yeast medication as the tampon may absorb the medication and make it less effective.

Oral antifungal medicines are available with a prescription and are easy to use.

What Is Trichomoniasis?

A 2020 study found that tea tree oil is effective in fighting off all types of Candida fungus. Up to 40% of women seek alternatives to treat vaginal yeast infection. He or she can conduct a pelvic exam and take a sample of your vaginal discharge to determine whether or not you have an overgrowth of Candida and prescribe the right treatment. Yeast infection. Additionally, failing to promptly change out of wet swimsuits or exercise clothing fosters an environment perfect for yeast growth. However, not all diaper rashes are the result yeast overgrowth. Your body will thank you.

The symptoms of vaginal yeast infections include: Antifungal pills that are taken by mouth affect your entire body. This ensures that your symptoms are definitely related to Candida overgrowth and not another more serious condition. A thick, white vaginal discharge with the consistency of cottage cheese. Luckily, treatment is simple: If you have lots of irritation, it may sting when you pee. You won’t “catch” the infection by air or by using the same shower as someone with the infection, for example.

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Douching should never be done as it may carry an infection deeper into the body. To help avoid them, follow your doctor's advice, wear cotton underwear, and try to wear loose-fitting clothes. It’s the same for bathing suits. A weakened immune system, certain health conditions, some lifestyle habits, and antibiotics may up your risk of developing a yeast infection.

Can Yeast Infections Cause Serious Problems?

If the problem coincides with switching to a new detergent, consider trying a different brand. Limit sugar intake, as sugar promotes the growth of yeast. Natural yogurt contains healthful bacteria called Lactobacillus. A So many women, at least in the US, walk around in yoga pants all day—even after they work out. But sometimes your yeast grows too much and leads to an infection. However, if you have a yeast infection, you should avoid sexual activity until the infection is gone.

We really don’t act on that unless she’s developed symptoms that are obviously bothersome to her. If you have fewer than four yeast infections in a year, you should: Avoid scented products such as bubble baths, feminine hygiene sprays, pads or tampons. Longitudinal study of mucosal Candida species colonization and candidiasis among human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-seropositive and at-risk HIV-seronegative women.

What Are The Symptoms Of A Yeast Infection In Men?

BV is not an STI, but because it is caused by an imbalance, sex can lead to BV by changing the pH in the vagina or by transferring bacteria. If you’re getting recurrent yeast infections, it could be that yours is being caused by a different type of fungus (instead of Candida albicans). Sometimes anti-yeast medicine taken by mouth (orally) is used. What are the symptoms of yeast infections?

Check her out on Facebook and Twitter. Some people, such as those with diabetes, are also more prone to yeast infections. Oral sex may also disrupt bacteria in the mouth, vagina, and penile areas. Some anti-yeast vaginal medications that are oil-based may weaken latex condoms making them more likely to break. These alternative therapies are currently not supported by research studies, but they may provide relief from Candida symptoms and, possibly, reduce the presence of yeast. Antibiotics kill bacteria that keep the vagina healthy and prevent an overgrowth of yeast.

After regular, thorough washing (using unscented, hypoallergenic or gentle soap), use your blow dryer on a low, cool setting to help dry the outside of your genital area. Home remedies Many women choose to use home remedies to treat mild to moderate yeast infections. Yeast can be present in the vagina and cause no problem or symptoms, but occasionally it overgrows and invades the vaginal tissue, leading to a yeast infection (2). You'll need to apply these every night before bed for one to seven days (depending on the product you buy), and your symptoms should subside in a few days. Infection typically occurs when the normal oral environment is disturbed or altered in such a way as to promote increased yeast growth (see patients at increased risk above). Sometimes women with yeast infections also experience pain with urination or while having sex. BV Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the most common type of vaginal infection in women between the ages of 15 and 44. A yeast infection can develop in various places on the human body, but is especially prone to spaces that are moist, warm, and dark.

Ask your doctor for more information regarding the differences between a yeast infection and a UTI.

Should I use an over-the-counter medication to treat a yeast infection?

HIV – Women who have HIV may experience more frequent yeast infections because of their weakened immune systems. Red, irritated skin around the opening to the vagina (labia). Infection occurs in about 30% of women who are taking a course of antibiotics by mouth.