What Increases My Risk Of Getting A Yeast Infection
Certain factors make you more likely to get a vaginal yeast infection.
Certain factors can increase your risk of getting a vaginal yeast infection. Some of those are:
Certain lifestyle risk factors also increase your risk of a vaginal yeast infection, such as:
- Sitting in a wet bathing suit.
- Not changing out of sweaty clothes.
- Wearing scented tampons or using a vaginal deodorant.
What Else Do You Need To Make Your Decision
Check the facts
- Sorry, that’s not right. If you’re pregnant, see your doctor before you treat your symptoms so you can make sure you have a yeast infection.
- You’re right. If you’re pregnant, see your doctor before you treat your symptoms so you can make sure you have a yeast infection.
- It may help to go back and read “Get the Facts.” If you’re pregnant, see your doctor before you treat your symptoms so you can make sure you have a yeast infection.
- You’re right. If you’re not pregnant and you know that your symptoms are caused by a yeast infection, you can treat it yourself with an over-the-counter antifungal medicine.
- Sorry, that’s not right. If you’re not pregnant and you know that your symptoms are caused by a yeast infection, you can treat it yourself with an over-the-counter antifungal medicine.
- It may help to go back and read “Get the Facts.” If you’re not pregnant and you know that your symptoms are caused by a yeast infection, it’s safe to treat it yourself.
How Do You Know When A Yeast Infection Is Gone
Once your symptoms resolve and youve completed the duration of your treatment, your yeast infection has cleared. If your symptoms resolve before you complete the full course of treatment, keep using the medication until you have finished it as directed.
If your symptoms persist, or if youre worried about the yeast infection recurring, talk to your doctor.
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How Yeast Infections Are Diagnosed
Symptoms of a yeast infection are very similar to the warning signs of other health issues, so you may be at risk if you diagnose it yourself. Find out when you should check in with your gynecologist.
Vaginal itching, redness, and discharge sound like sure signs of a yeast infection a fungal infection thats as common as it is annoying. As apparent as the infection may seem, however, you may face some risks if you diagnose or treat it yourself. These symptoms can also be a red flag for other, more serious health issues. The only way to know for sure is to see your gynecologist especially if youve never been diagnosed with a yeast infection before.
Symptoms of a Yeast Infection
Vulvovaginal candidiasis, more commonly known as a yeast infection, develops when theres an overgrowth of the Candida yeast normally found in the . The infection can cause a number of uncomfortable symptoms, including:
- A burning sensation in the vaginal area
- Vaginal discharge ranging from thin and watery to thick and curd-like
If you have a yeast infection, you might experience other warning signs such as painful urination, says Sarah Wagner, MD, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Loyola University Health System in Maywood, Ill. This is caused by urine making contact with an irritated vulva, she says.
Why Its Important to See Your Doctor for a Yeast Infection
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Does Yogurt Prevent Or Treat Yeast Infections
Maybe. Studies suggest that eating eight ounces of yogurt with “live cultures” daily or taking Lactobacillus acidophilus capsules can help prevent infection.4,5
But, more research still needs to be done to say for sure if yogurt with Lactobacillus or other probiotics can prevent or treat vaginal yeast infections. If you think you have a yeast infection, see your doctor or nurse to make sure before taking any over-the-counter medicine.
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What Is Penile Candidiasis
The most common cause of penile candidiasis is the fungus Candida albicans. Candida is present in the human body but is usually well controlled by the immune system.
On occasion, however, the fungus can overgrow if the immune system is suppressed or the natural balance of microorganisms on the skin is disrupted.
Some people with penile candidiasis have no symptoms. Those that do may experience:
- Genital itchiness
When To See The Doctor
Remember, the only way to know for sure if your symptoms are being caused by a yeast infection is to visit your doctor. Your doctor can confirm that you have a yeast infection and recommend an appropriate treatment. It is especially important to see your doctor if:
- you have never had a yeast infection diagnosed by a doctor before or your symptoms are different from what you experienced in the past
- it has been less than 2 months since your last yeast infection
- you’re having frequent or recurrent yeast infections
- the discharge has an odour
- you have a fever or pelvic pain
- you are pregnant or breast-feeding
- you are less than 12 years old
- you have diabetes
- the treatment you tried for your yeast infection didn’t work
- you think you might have a sexually transmitted infection
- your immune system is not functioning properly
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What Can I Do To Prevent Yeast Infections
As a rule of thumb, it would be better to wear underwear with a cotton crotch that doesnt fit too tightly. Always wash your panties with warm water and avoid scented feminine products this includes pads, tampons and even bubble baths. It would help to avoid hot tubs too.
Try not to go on antibiotics unless absolutely necessary.
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What Matters Most To You
Your personal feelings are just as important as the medical facts. Think about what matters most to you in this decision, and show how you feel about the following statements.
Reasons to treat a vaginal yeast infection yourself
Reasons not to treat a yeast infection yourself
I’m sure I have a yeast infection.
I’m not sure I have a yeast infection.
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How To Get Rid Of A Yeast Infection
The only foolproof way to get rid of a yeast infection is by taking a short course of antifungal medication. These are available as over-the-counter or prescription oral pills, topical antifungal creams, and suppositories.
OTC treatment options include the cream clotrimazole and miconazole , which comes as a cream or suppository. The most widely used prescription treatment option is fluconazole , an oral medication that you take for two or three days .
If you experience chronic or recurrent yeast infections, your doctor may prescribe a longer course of medication to take for several weeks or months. This will ensure the infection clears up completely and does not return.
Does My Sexual Partner Need To Be Treated If I Have A Vaginal Yeast Infection
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Yeast infections are a very common fungal infection that most women or people assigned female at birth will have in their lifetime. Its highly treatable with medication, some of which are available to purchase at your local drug store without a prescription. Even though you may know the signs of a vaginal yeast infection, its important to get examined by your healthcare provider. They can recommend the best treatment based on the type of yeast infection you have and its severity.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 09/02/2022.
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How Can I Reduce My Risk Of A Yeast Infection
You can often prevent vaginal yeast infections by making a few lifestyle changes. These changes can include:
- Not douching douching can kill bacteria that actually control fungus.
- Avoiding the use of feminine deodorants.
- Not using scented tampons or pads.
- Changing out of wet clothing, like bathing suits or gym clothes, as soon as you can.
- Wearing cotton underwear and loose-fitting clothes.
- Using water-based sexual lubricants.
- Keeping your blood sugar levels in a normal range if you have diabetes.
The symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection are similar to other conditions. If you have any questions, a physical exam by your healthcare provider will help.
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When To See A Healthcare Provider
It helps to see a doctor if the symptoms are severe or unusual. If the problem is related to a tight foreskin, circumcision may be recommended.
If you decide to self treat and OTC treatments dont work, or the yeast infection recurs, its important to see a doctor for an evaluation.
There may be an underlying cause for the infection, including undiagnosed diabetes, an underactive thyroid , HIV, or penile cancer.
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When To See A Doctor For Yeast Infections
If youve been diagnosed with a yeast infection by a doctor in the past and are experiencing the same symptoms again, then generally there is no need to see a doctor. You can self-medicate with anti fungal creams. However, if youve had sex recently with a new partner and are experiencing symptoms typical of a yeast infection itching, burning, unusual vaginal discharge, then it might be in your best interest to see a doctor as they could be signs of a sexually transmitted infection .
Apart from that, you should also see a doctor if:
You are experiencing your first yeast infectionThis is to ensure you dont have a more serious problem that requires different treatment, such as a urinary tract infection or STI. Most women whove never had a yeast infection diagnose themselves right only about 11% of the time. So its important to see a doctor who can do a slide or swab test to get a proper diagnosis.
You suspect youre pregnant or are pregnantAny medication, including over-the-counter vaginal creams used for yeast infections, need to be approved by a doctor during pregnancy.
You get recurring yeast infectionsIf you get four or more yeast infections in a year, you might have recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis. Treatment for this condition will require taking an antifungal medication for 6 months. In addition, frequent yeast infections may be a sign of underlying medical conditions like diabetes.
What You Can Do To Treat A Yeast Infection Before Seeing A Doctor Straight From An Ob
An overgrowth of yeast is one of the most common causes of irritation down there in fact, an estimated three out of four women will have a vaginal yeast infection at some point in their lives. While candida albicans is the most likely culprit, there are other fungi that can be present and more difficult to treat. That said, as a practicing gynecologist, I believe its perfectly reasonable to try to find relief from a yeast infection at home before making an appointment with your doctor. First, you should know the risks and just how long you should wait for home remedies to work.
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Diagnosing A Yeast Infection: Signs To Look For
Once a woman has had a yeast infection, its usually easier for her to identify another one when symptoms first appear. Common symptoms can include:
- Thick, white discharge
- Burning feeling especially when peeing or having sex
- Vaginal pain, redness and swelling
Sometimes there are no obvious symptoms, so its important to know what your bodys normal healthy state is. With a yeast infection, there is typically no odor. If youre not sure if you have an infection, you can use the MONISTAT® Symptom Checker to help guide you. Its just a few questions and should take you less than 1 minute to complete.
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When To Go To The Doctor
Because yeast infections and BV have such similar symptoms, it can be hard to tell which you are experiencing, and self-diagnosing is often inaccurate, Dr. Urrutia says.
Dr. Urrutia recommends watching your symptoms for a few days before taking any action. This ensures that you arent just experiencing a normal part of your menstrual cycle.
If you believe you may have a yeast infection, Dr. Urrutia says its OK to try an over-the-counter antifungal medication before making an appointment with your doctoras long as the medication is longer than a one-day treatment.
Do not use the one-day treatments because they are not as effective as the longer-course treatments, she says. You should at least be using the three-day treatment.
It can take up to a week and a half for yeast infection symptoms to go away, but you should see some improvement within a week, Dr. Urrutia says. If your symptoms dont improve, its time to go to the doctor.
Unlike yeast infections, you cannot take OTC medication for BV. If you think you might be experiencing BV, talk to your doctor, who can prescribe the appropriate medication.
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What To Do When A Yeast Infection Wont Go Away
Certain yeast infections are more serious than others, and others can be resistant to medications typically used to treat them. So if your yeast infection isnt going away on its own or with over-the-counter treatment, see a gynecologist or other healthcare provider. You might need further testing and a secondary course of prescription antifungal medication.
Related Conditions To Yeast Infections
Vaginal concerns can be a common occurrence. Sometimes the cause is obvious, such as changes in menstrual cycle, sexual activity, or a new product you may be using. Other times, the cause may not be as clear. If you’ve had a yeast infection before, it may be easy to assume your yeast infection symptoms have the same cause, but that is not always the case. There are a few conditions with symptoms that can be mistaken for yeast infection symptoms.
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Diagnosis Of Yeast Infection
Many women who have experienced a yeast infection before will know the signs and can often treat it themselves at home with over-the-counter medications. However, if you are at all unsure of your symptoms or feel your yeast infection is unmanageable on your own, it is best to see your doctor.
When you arrive at your appointment, your doctor will ask you questions about your symptoms and your medical history. You may also be asked whether you have had a sexually transmitted infection in the past and about your sexual history.
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Can Vaginal Yeast Infections Be Prevented
For most girls, there’s no way to prevent yeast infections. You may feel more comfortable and have less irritation if you wear breathable cotton underwear and clothes and avoid vaginal sprays and douches. Wearing cotton underwear may also help prevent yeast infections.
If you have diabetes, keeping blood sugar levels stable also can help you avoid yeast infections.
If you think you have an infection, call your doctor for advice. Don’t take leftover antibiotics or someone else’s antibiotics or medicine. They might be the wrong choice for your condition, and taking antibiotics when they’re not needed can make yeast infections more likely.
Yeast infections can be annoying, especially if they happen often. To help avoid them, follow your doctor’s advice, wear cotton underwear, and try to wear loose-fitting clothes. Your body will thank you.
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When To See Your Doctor
If any of these three situations sounds like yours, you need a doctor’s attention:
- It’s the first yeast infection you’ve ever had. See a doctor to be sure it’s not a more serious problem that needs a different treatment, such as a urinary tract infection or STI.
- You’re pregnant. Any medications, including over-the-counter vaginal creams, need to be approved by your doctor during pregnancy.
- You often get yeast infections. If you have four or more yeast infections in a year, doctors call it ârecurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis.â If you have it, youâll need treatment for up to 6 months with an antifungal medication. Frequent yeast infections can also be a sign that you have diabetes or another medical condition.
If you’re concerned about your symptoms or they’re different from past yeast infections you’ve had, you may want to see your doctor for your own peace of mind. They may recommend a prescription-strength vaginal cream to ease the itching and burning more quickly than an over-the-counter product would. There are also oral antifungal medications that might be prescribed.
How Much Tea Tree Oil To Use
Melaleuca oil suppositories can come in different forms, as well as in different dosages.
Although the common vaginal yeast infection treatment suppository is sold in a six-pack. You are typically advised to take it in six days . However, this may vary depending on the products brand. In this case, when deciding on how much oil should be used, adhering to the guideline for using the specific product you chose will be the best way to go.
Different products also come with additional factors and cautions to be mindful of. So its best to research what your suppository of choice recommends you to do.
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