Ruling Out Other Vaginal Conditions
A few other vaginal conditions result in symptoms that are like those of thrush. See your doctor if you:
- have had several episodes of thrush in a short period
- have had recent sex without a condom with a new partner
- have associated pain in your pelvic area or abnormal bleeding
- treated yourself with a thrush treatment and your symptoms havent gone away.
Infectious Diseases, Womens Health
Sometimes vaginitisor vaginal inflammationcan be so mild you may not think anything out of the norm is happening. Other times, vaginitis is accompanied by pain and discomfort, which may point to a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis.
The problem? Both issues share common symptoms, which can make it hard to distinguish which one you are experiencing.
Rachel Urrutia, MD, an OB-GYN at UNC Medical Center and assistant professor at the UNC School of Medicine, explains the difference between the two and when you should see a doctor.
Questions For Your Doctor
- Do my symptoms indicate a yeast infection?
- Do I need any tests, such as for sexually transmitted infections?
- What is the likely cause of my yeast infection?
- What treatment do you recommend? Can I use an over-the-counter medicines?
- Does my sexual partner need treatment?
- Is it safe for me to have sex, or should I wait until after I finish the treatment?
- What should I do if I get another yeast infection? Do I need to visit you again?
Do Guys Get Yeast Infections
Guys who are not circumcised need to take extra care to clean properly beneath their foreskins. The warm, moist folds of the foreskin are the perfect environment for yeast to thrive. Keeping the area clean and dry may help prevent an infection. If symptoms do show up, a doctor can treat the infection.
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Can A Yeast Infection Be Prevented
You can prevent some yeast infections by doing these things:
- Use good oral hygiene to help prevent yeast infection in your mouth . This includes brushing and flossing your teeth every day and using mouthwash as needed.
- Wear cotton underwear to help to prevent a vaginal or genital yeast infection. If you are a woman and get vaginal yeast infections often, you may want to take probiotics.
- Keep areas where skin rubs up against skin dry and try to reduce friction.
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 that’s 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 you’ve never been diagnosed with a yeast infection before.
Symptoms of a Yeast Infection
Vulvovaginal candidiasis, more commonly known as a yeast infection, develops when there’s 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 It’s Important to See Your Doctor for a Yeast Infection
Diagnosing Yeast Infections at the Doctor’s Office
Prescription Treatment for Yeast Infection
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Are Test Results Accurate
Research has shown that self-testing vaginal pH as well as collecting samples at home for NAAT testing are similar in accuracy to testing performed by health care providers. However, at-home vaginal yeast infection testing is not a replacement for physician-ordered tests and you should talk to your doctor before treating a suspected yeast infection.
How Is Yeast Infection Treated
Your healthcare provider will consider your age, overall health, how widespread the infection is and other factors to determine your treatment.
Yeast infections can be easily treated with ointments or other anti-yeast creams.
- Yeast infection in the mouth may be treated with a medicated mouthwash. Or it may be treated with lozenges that dissolve in the mouth.
- If you have a severe infection and have a weak immune system, you may need to take an oral anti-yeast medicine.
- Esophageal yeast infections are usually treated with oral or intravenous anti-yeast medicines.
- Yeast infections of the nails are treated with an oral anti-yeast medicine.
- Yeast infections in the skin folds can be treated with anti-yeast powders.
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Treatment Of Vaginal Yeast Infection
Yeast infections are treated with antifungal drugs. They may be used in the following ways:
Applied as a cream to the affected area
Butoconazole, clotrimazole, miconazole, and tioconazole are available without a prescription. Oils in these creams and ointments weaken latex-based condoms , so women cannot rely on condoms for birth control.
Antifungal drugs taken by mouth require a prescription. A single dose of fluconazole is as effective as the creams and ointments. However, if infections recur often, women may need to take several doses.
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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Is There Anything Else I Need To Know About A Yeast Test
Certain antibiotics can cause yeast to grow out of control. So, be sure to tell your provider about any medicines you are taking.
At-home tests for vaginal yeast infections can tell you if your symptoms are likely to be from a yeast infection. But they may not be able to confirm the diagnosis. It’s best to talk with your provider about your symptoms and which test is best for you. This is important, because many symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection are the same as the symptoms from certain sexually transmitted diseases .
Are There Any Risks To The Test
The test does not pose any danger to the person taking them. The main risk when doing the test at home is that you will limit the results in terms of the information the test provides.
Only medical settings under the supervision of a health care expert can give you all of your diagnosis alternatives. While no test comes without any risks, getting tested in a setting that is not a medical institution has the risk of being misdiagnosed or not diagnosed with anything.
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What To Do After Receiving Yeast Infection Test Results
If you suspect you have a yeast infection after taking an at-home pH test, you can self-treat with OTC medication, such as miconazole and clotrimazole.
Calamine or 1 percent hydrocortisone cream can help relieve vulvar itching. Additionally, switching to cotton or other breathable underwear can help prevent symptoms from getting worse.
If you get a diagnosis from a doctor, they may prescribe prescription medication, or you can also take OTC medication.
People with recurrent yeast infections may be treated differently. For instance, a doctor may consider a fungal culture or recommend stronger prescription medication.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Vaginal Yeast Infections
Vaginal yeast infections can cause:
- redness, swelling, or itching of the vulva
- a thick, white discharge that can look like cottage cheese and is usually odorless, although it might smell like bread or yeast
- pain or burning when urinating or during sex
If you have any of these symptoms, see your doctor or gynecologist. It’s easy to confuse the symptoms of a yeast infection with those of some STDs and other vaginal infections. Your doctor can make sure you are treated for the right type of infection.
If you have a vaginal yeast infection, your doctor can recommend treatment to clear up the symptoms and cure the infection quickly.
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How Is It Treated
Vaginal yeast infections can be treated with medicinessuch as pills or creams, ovules, or ointments. Treatmentmay take from 1 to 7 days days. Women with weakimmune systems or other medical problems may needlonger treatment. Always finish treatment, even if thesigns of a yeast infection go away. Yeast infectionscan come back if not treated correctly. Infection ismore likely to return if some health problems, such asdiabetes, are not under control.
Is It Safe To Use Over
Yes, but always talk with your doctor or nurse before treating yourself for a vaginal yeast infection. This is because:
- You may be trying to treat an infection that is not a yeast infection. Studies show that two out of three women who buy yeast infection medicine don’t really have a yeast infection.2 Instead, they may have an STI or bacterial vaginosis . STIs and BV require different treatments than yeast infections and, if left untreated, can cause serious health problems.
- Using treatment when you do not actually have a yeast infection can cause your body to become resistant to the yeast infection medicine. This can make actual yeast infections harder to treat in the future.
- Some yeast infection medicine may weaken condoms and diaphragms, increasing your chance of getting pregnant or an STI when you have sex. Talk to your doctor or nurse about what is best for you, and always read and follow the directions on the medicine carefully.
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Why Do I Need A Yeast Infection Test
Yeast infections are easily treatable and also preventable. There are various ways to treat infections safely, and over-the-counter medication is one of them.
If you think have a candidiasis, and if you test positive for it, this process will help you get the perfect treatment that caters to your specific needs.
In some cases, when DIY treatment solutions dont work, seeking professional help is necessary. Knowing what you have will go a long way toward determining which path to recovery you should take.
What Are The Symptoms Of A Vaginal Yeast Infection
There are several tell-tale signs of a vaginal yeast infection. These symptoms can include:
- A thick, white vaginal discharge with the consistency of cottage cheese.
- Small cuts or tiny cracks in the skin of your vulva because of fragile skin in the area.
- A burning feeling when you pee.
In some cases, another symptom of a vaginal yeast infection can be pain during sex.
Symptoms of a yeast infection are similar to the symptoms people feel when they have a sexually transmitted infection or other vaginal infection. Contact your healthcare provider if you have any of these symptoms so they can examine you.
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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.
More Yeast Infection Facts
- Yeast likes estrogen.Yeast infections are more common during the second half of the menstrual cycle, while taking birth control pills or during pregnancy.
- Antibiotics can cause yeast infections. Antibiotics can reduce the friendly bacteria that keep candida albicans in check, allowing yeast to overgrow.
- Youre more likely to develop a yeast infection if youre overweight or diabetic.
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What Causes Yeast Infections
normal changes in hormone levels
antibiotics, cortisone, and other drugs
a weak immune system
a natural reaction to another person’s genital chemistry
Yeast infections arent an STD. They arent contagious, and cant spread to another person during sex. But sexual contact sometimes leads to yeast infections your body chemistry can have a bad reaction to another persons natural genital yeast and bacteria, which causes yeast to grow.
People can also get a yeast infection on their mouth, throat, or tongue thats called “thrush.”
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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Questions For Your Doctor After At
After taking an at-home vaginal yeast infection test, it is important to speak with your health care provider about the test results. Questions that might be helpful include:
- What does my at-home vaginal yeast infection test result mean about my health?
- Are any follow-up tests needed to confirm my at-home test results?
- Is there anything that I can do to reduce my risk of yeast infections?
Stix Vaginal Ph Tests
Stix offers home delivery and is urologist approved. This kit was designed by women with women in mind.
Kits get delivered to your front door in a discreet box and offer quick test results.
Each kit comes with two test swabs and simple instructions. Additionally, for people who need to monitor their pH levels regularly, the brand offers subscription options.
Reviews show satisfaction with the tests among customers who are prone to yeast infections and those looking for affordable options. Others appreciate that the test is discreet and they dont have to make regular trips to their pharmacy.
If you have any of these symptoms, you may want to get tested for a yeast infection. See a doctor if this is the first infection youre experiencing, or if youve tried self-treating with no improvement.
If you dont have the ability to see a doctor right away, you can use an at-home pH kit to test whether your vaginal pH levels are off.
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Yeast Infection And Periods
Having both a yeast infection and your period can feel like a double whammy. However, this isnt uncommon. Yeast infections are most likely to occur in women during the final days leading up to their period.
If you experience white to yellow discharge in the week before your period, this isnt automatically a yeast infection unless you have other hallmark symptoms, too, such as redness, burning, and itchiness.
How Are Vaginal Yeast Infections Treated
If you’re using a vaginal treatment and are sexually active, you should not have sex until the infection has been completely treated because these medicines can weaken condoms and diaphragms.
All these types of medicine can clear up your symptoms in a couple of days and cure the infection within a week. It’s important to take the medicine for the whole time its prescribed. If you stop taking it too soon, the infection could come back. If you’re not feeling better within a few days of finishing treatment, call your doctor.
Some medicines used to treat yeast infections are available without a prescription, but you see a doctor for your diagnosis before buying one. You could have another type of infection that might get worse if not properly treated. Also, over-the-counter medicine should not be used by anyone younger than 12 or girls who might be pregnant without talking to a doctor first.
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Less Common Signs Of Early Pregnancy
Besides the more common signs of early pregnancy, there are also some less common ones. There is no guarantee that these signs of pregnancy will occur, just as they might not occur with the most common symptoms. Symptoms will differ from person to person, so remember that every person is different.
The following are less common signs of early pregnancy:
Could I Be Pregnant If I Am Pregnant How Soon Will I Know
Each womans pregnancy experience is unique. Some women detect their pregnancy within the first few days of pregnancy, while others dont notice anything until they miss a period. It is also possible for some women to not discover they are pregnant until a few months after conception.
A pregnancy test is the most accurate way to find out if youre expecting. A pregnancy test measures a hormone called human chorionic gonadotrophin . During pregnancy, this hormone starts to build in your body from the moment of conception and multiplies rapidly.
Although it appears early in the process, it takes some time for your body to build up enough levels of hCG to register on a pregnancy test. A pregnancy test usually shows a positive result three to four weeks after the first day of your last period.
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