Yeast infections or vaginal candidiasis is experienced by 3 out of 4 women at some point throughout their lives. Most women experience at least two yeast infections. This is not a sexually transmitted infection but you can spread the fungus through oral contact with the genitals.
Home Remedies for Yeast Infection
1. Keep Dry and Loose
Warm and moist conditions can greatly boost the growth of yeast organisms. So dry the vaginal area after you shower or bath and keep the area dry all the day to avoid the growing medium.
Choose loose pant and cotton underwear which is “breathable”. If you have to wear nylon clothing, you can opt for those with a built-in cotton-lined panty. Avoid wearing wet swimsuits for a long time and change into dry clothes the moment that you finish swimming.
2. Practice Personal Hygiene
Secretions caused by the yeast organism can irritate the genital area, as the nerve endings located at the opening of the vaginal area sense the existence of the yeast. Despite of the infection outside or inside the vagina, frequent washing the secretions away can relieve the symptom.
As yeast infection can spread to others such as your sexual partner, and children as well, avoid sharing personal items like towels or bating with others. Wash the hands often with soap, especially after using the toilets. Use hot water to wash your clothes since high water temperature can destroy the yeast organisms on the clothing. Carefully wash up thoroughly before lovemaking and ask your partner to do so.
3. Stop Routine Douching
Douching regularly can throw off the pH balance in the vagina. The vagina is capable of cleaning itself, so douching is not necessary. Using a douche regularly can also increase your risk for pelvic inflammatory disease.
And stop using alcohol or other harsh chemicals in order to keep the pH balance and avoid the growth of yeast in the vaginal area.
4. Apply Vinegar Douche
A vinegar douche can help restore the proper pH to the vagina so yeast will not be able to grow.
- Mix a vinegar solution and insert it into a douche.
- Take the time to ensure that the irrigation nozzle, tube and container are very clean so avoid further contamination.
- Lie in your bathtub with the legs parted and a towel folded beneath the buttocks.
- Hold the container 12-18 inches above the hips and insert the nozzle gently into the vagina using a rotating motion.
- Stop 2-4 inches in when you feel resistance.
- Let the douche solution flow slowly into the vagina, holding the vaginal lips closed to create a bit of pressure so the solution will flow throughout the internal surface.
- This should take around 10 minutes.
5. Try Boric Acid
Using boric acid capsules for a suppository can help to kill off a yeast infection. This is not safe for those that are pregnant. Talk to your doctor about the safety of this remedy before attempting it.
6. Use OTC Fungal Creams
Clotrimazoe and micronazole are commonly used in the treatment of yeast infections. You can get over the counter versions of these medications in many pharmacies. Follow the directions on the package and make sure you complete a full course of treatment to help make sure the yeast is properly reduced.
7. Get Treatment for Both Partners
It is easy to pass yeast infections between sexual partners, particularly if the male has an uncircumcised penis. If you find that you have a yeast infection, get treatment for both partners to avoid continually passing the infection back and forth. Using condoms while the infection is present can also help you avoid contracting a yeast infection from your partner. Some doctors believe that birth control pills or contraceptive sponges can increase your risk of a yeast infection, so those prone to this infection may need to rethink how they manage their birth control.
8. Try Natural Antifungal Agents
- Herbs. Boil three and a half cups of water and steep 1 ¼ teaspoons of basil for 30 minutes. Allow this to cool and gargle with it or use maple syrup to sweeten and sip it as a tea. Rosemary or thyme tea or a rosemary douche can also help you get rid of yeast.
- Tea tree oil. Tea tree oil has antifungal properties. Dilute the oil and place a few drops on a tampon that has a lubricant applied and insert it in your vagina for around half an hour. Performing this ritual every morning and before you go to bed should cure the infection in a few days.
- Yogurt. Eating yogurt with live cultures can help to restore the proper balance of healthy bacteria in your body. You can also place 1-2 tablespoons of this yogurt into the vagina or create a mixture of yogurt and warm water to use as a douche.
- Cranberries. Drinking unsweetened cranberry juice can help you get rid of yeast fungus.
- Garlic. Garlic has antifungal properties. Eat two to three cloves a day to help get rid of thrush.
When to See a Doctor
In some cases you may need a doctor’s opinion to help manage your yeast infection. Do not try to treat your symptoms at home in the following conditions:
- If you are pregnant, you have been exposed to a sexually transmitted infection or you have been suffering from recurrent infections.
- If you have never diagnosed a yeast infection before or you are not sure if you have a yeast infection you should get a doctor’s opinion before applying treatment options.
- If you have been self-treating and your symptoms are not getting better you should get medical assistance. It may turn out that you have a more complicated yeast infection that is caused by Candida albicans or other issues like diabetes or HIV infections, which are making it difficult for your body to fight an infection the way it should.