5 Do’s and Don’ts for Treating a Vaginal Yeast Infection
- Prescription antifungal medication: If you have a yeast infection, your doctor may prescribe an oral medication called Fluconazol. This pill can usually treat most yeast infections with just one dose, although it may take a few days for the symptoms to go away. If you are unable to take a pill or if you are pregnant, your doctor may prescribe a three or seven-day treatment of Terconazole, an antifungal vaginal cream.
- Over-the-counter antifungal cream: If you’d rather try an over-the-counter treatment first, Miconazole is a topical antifungal cream available in one, three, and seven day options. It’s a little messy, but can bring quick relief and is often faster than the prescription pill. However, it’s important to note that there are different types of yeast, so it’s best to consult with your doctor to determine the most effective treatment for your specific infection.
- Don’t use yogurt: Although eating yogurt can be a healthy source of probiotics (good bacteria and yeast), applying it topically to the vulva or inserting it into the vagina will not help treat a yeast infection. In fact, the natural sugars in yogurt, even unsweetened, can actually fuel yeast growth and make the infection worse.
- Don’t sit in vinegar: There is little evidence that sitting in a vinegar bath can reduce vaginal pH and treat a yeast infection. In fact, it can be painful and cause more burning or irritation. Old-fashioned vinegar douches should also be avoided as they can disrupt healthy bacteria and increase the risk of infection.
- Don’t try DIY remedies: There are many home remedies floating around the internet that have not been proven to treat yeast infections, including applying tea tree oil, coconut oil, or garlic topically or inserting them into the vagina with a suppository. These remedies can cause burning and further irritation. If you get yeast infections frequently or if recommended treatments don’t seem to help, it’s important to consult with your doctor to determine the underlying cause.
What is a vaginal yeast infection?
A vaginal yeast infection, also known as candidiasis, is a common type of fungal infection that affects the vagina and vulva. It is caused by an overgrowth of the fungus Candida albicans, which is normally present in small amounts in the vagina.
What are the symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection?
The most common symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection include vaginal itching, burning, and discharge. Other symptoms may include redness and swelling of the vulva, pain during urination or sexual intercourse, and a burning sensation during urination.
What causes a vaginal yeast infection?
There are several factors that can increase the risk of developing a vaginal yeast infection, including taking antibiotics, having uncontrolled diabetes, having a weakened immune system, using perfumed soaps or douches, and wearing tight-fitting clothing.
How is a vaginal yeast infection diagnosed?
To diagnose a vaginal yeast infection, your doctor will likely perform a physical exam and ask about your medical history. They may also take a sample of the discharge from your vagina for laboratory testing to confirm the diagnosis.
How is a vaginal yeast infection treated?
Treatment for a vaginal yeast infection typically involves antifungal medication, which can be taken orally or applied topically to the affected area. Over-the-counter antifungal creams, such as Miconazole, or prescription medications, such as Fluconazol or Terconazole, are effective treatments for most yeast infections.
Can a vaginal yeast infection be prevented?
There are several steps you can take to prevent vaginal yeast infections, including: Wearing cotton underwear Avoiding tight-fitting clothing Keeping the genital area dry and clean Avoiding douching Eating a healthy diet Practicing safe sex Using non-perfumed soaps and avoiding perfumed hygiene products
Is a vaginal yeast infection contagious?
A vaginal yeast infection is not contagious and cannot be transmitted through sexual contact. However, the fungus that causes yeast infections, Candida albicans, can be transmitted through sexual contact, so it is important to practice safe sex and avoid sexual activity while being treated for a yeast infection.