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What is a Yeast Infection?
A yeast infection is a buildup of yeast in the body, usually in the vagina, which is called vulvovaginal candidiasis or vaginitis. Yeast can multiply in the vaginal area because it is moist and dark and can change pH level easily. For some women, yeast infections will occur during or before the menstrual period 2. If you have recurring yeast infections more than once a month, contact your doctor 2. Otherwise, yeast infections can be cured with over-the-counter and home remedies and do not need treatment from a doctor 2.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
Treating a Yeast Infection
Home Remedies for Vaginal Skin Irritation
A yeast infection can be treated with over-the-counter yeast infection creams like Monistat. Monistat cream is inserted directly into the vagina to prevent the spreading and multiplying of yeast. Yeast infections can also be treated with at-home remedies like dipping yogurt in a tampon and inserting the tampon for one hour, three times a day 2. Eat yogurt regularly and take two acidophilus tablets per day, which you can purchase at your local drugstore or health food store, to promote the growth of good bacteria in your body that will regulate the yeast. Wear white, cotton underwear with no dyes in it and take a shower every day. Drink plenty of water throughout your yeast infection to flush any toxins out of your system.
- A yeast infection can be treated with over-the-counter yeast infection creams like Monistat.
- Eat yogurt regularly and take two acidophilus tablets per day, which you can purchase at your local drugstore or health food store, to promote the growth of good bacteria in your body that will regulate the yeast.
How Long Does it Last?
Yeast infections will usually not go away without some form of treatment 2. Over-the-counter medications should be used if eating yogurt and placing it in the vagina does not work after two weeks. If after two weeks, an over-the-counter medication does not work, see a doctor for an antibiotic such as Diflucan, which will stop yeast growth. If treated with at-home remedies, a yeast infection will usually go away within two weeks. If you use an over-the-counter cream like Monistat, the yeast infection should go away within a week.
- Yeast infections will usually not go away without some form of treatment 2.
- If treated with at-home remedies, a yeast infection will usually go away within two weeks.
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- MayoClinic.com: Vaginitis
- MedlinePlus: Yeast Infections
- Planned Parenthood. What is a yeast infection?
- InformedHealth.org [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Vaginal yeast infection (thrush): Overview. 2019 Jun 19.Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK543220/
- Singh A, Verma R, Murari A, Agrawal A. Oral candidiasis: An overview. J Oral Maxillofac Pathol. 2014;18(Suppl 1):S81–S85. doi:10.4103/0973-029X.141325
- Jeanmonod R, Jeanmonod D. Vaginal Candidiasis (Vulvovaginal Candidiasis) [Updated 2020 Feb 4]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK459317/
- InformedHealth.org [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Oral thrush: Overview. 2012 Apr 26 [Updated 2019 Aug 15].Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK367586/
- Blostein F, Levin-sparenberg E, Wagner J, Foxman B. Recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis. Ann Epidemiol. 2017;27(9):575-582.e3. doi:10.1016/j.annepidem.2017.08.010
- Aguin TJ, Sobel JD. Vulvovaginal candidiasis in pregnancy. Curr Infect Dis Rep. 2015;17(6):462. doi:10.1007/s11908-015-0462-0
- Rajalakshmi R, Kalaivani S. Prevalence of asymptomatic infections in sexually transmitted diseases attendees diagnosed with bacterial vaginosis, vaginal candidiasis, and trichomoniasis. Indian J Sex Transm Dis AIDS. 2016;37(2):139–142. doi:10.4103/0253-7184.192121
- Ringdahl EN. Treatment of recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis. Am Fam Physician. 2000;61(11):3306-12, 3317.
- Aguin TJ, Sobel JD. Vulvovaginal candidiasis in pregnancy. Curr Infect Dis Rep. 2015 Jun;17(6):462. doi: 10.1007/s11908-015-0462-0.
- Blostein F, Levin-Sparenberg E, Wagner J, Foxman B. Recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis. Ann Epidemiol. 2017 Sep;27(9):575-582.e3. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2017.08.010.
- Chew SY, Than LT. Vulvovaginal candidosis: contemporary challenges and the future of prophylactic and therapeutic approaches. Mycoses. 2016 May;59(5):262-73. doi: 10.1111/myc.12455.
- Roberts CL, Algert CS, Rickard KL, Morris JM. Treatment of vaginal candidiasis for the prevention of preterm birth: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Syst Rev. 2015 Mar 21;4:31. doi: 10.1186/s13643-015-0018-2.
- Xie HY, Feng D, Wei DM, Mei L, Chen H, Wang X, Fang F. Probiotics for vulvovaginal candidiasis in non-pregnant women. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2017 Nov 23;11:CD010496. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD010496.pub2.
Megan Smith has been a freelance writer and editor since 2006. She writes about health, fitness, travel, beauty and grooming topics for various print and Internet publications. Smith earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in writing from New York University.