Any woman who has had one knows how uncomfortable a vaginal yeast infection can be. The vagina needs a certain amount of candida albicans, yeast, to function properly. Certain factors can disrupt the harmonious balance of flora in the vagina. This imbalance results in an overgrowth of yeast and symptoms that accompany it. Symptoms include intense itching, and a thick vaginal discharge. Bring the yeast infection to an end quickly by using the best over -the-counter treatments.
Make sure that your symptoms are caused by yeast infection before starting treatment. Several disorders mimic yeast infection symptoms. Thick vaginal discharge, with or without odor, are also symptoms of some sexually transmitted diseases. Bacterial vaginosis produces the same symptoms as a yeast infection. STDs and bacterial vaginosis require different treatment than yeast infection. Most drug stores carry test strips that can help identify a yeast infection. See your physician if the test strips indicate a normal amount of yeast.
Azole antifungal medications are used to treat yeast infection. These medications come in many varieties including topical creams, vaginal suppositories and oral tablets. Oral tablets, such as flucanazole, require only one dose to treat yeast infection. Oral yeast infection treatment can be helpful if yeast has invaded the digestive tract, but has annoying side effects such as headache and nausea. Topical creams including miconazole are available in one, three and seven day treatments. These are quite effective. One and three day varieties are slightly more expensive, but fast acting. Topical creams are also rather messy. Single dose vaginal suppositories of miconazole cost effective, easy to use and fast-acting. Vaginal suppositories are not associated with any side effects.
Fight yeast infection naturally using probiotics. The probiotic Lactobacillus acidophiles destroys excess yeast in the body. Acidophilus supplements are available at most drug stores. Use an acidophiles douche to treat a current yeast infection. Purchase acidophiles from an herbalist or health food store. Prepare the douche by mixing two table spoons of acidophiles with one cup of sterile, tepid water. Use a bulb-syringe to gently cleanse the inside of the vagina. Apply plain yogurt with live active cultures directly onto the outside of the vagina to relieve itching.
Prevent yeast infections through diet. Take acidophiles supplements daily. Some foods are natural yeast antagonists. Eat yogurt often, but choose it wisely. Read the label of the yogurt container to be sure it includes live active cultures. Limit your consumption of sugar if you experience recurrent yeast infections. Alcohol converts to sugar in the body, and consumption should be limited.
Visit your doctor if you experience more than four vaginal yeast infections per year. Frequent yeast infections can be caused by an underlying disease. The most serious diseases associated with frequent yeast infections include diabetes and Human Immunodeficiency Virus, or HIV. Use of broad spectrum antibiotics or corticosteroids can cause yeast infection.