Yeast Infection Treatments - 8 Tips To Vaginal Infection Relief

Yeast infection treatments require your knowledge of the nature of yeast infections and how yeast and fungus overgrows in certain parts of the body.

Among women, vaginal yeast infection is a common problem. It is often caused by the over-proliferation of a species of fungus called Candida albicans. As such, vaginal yeast infection is also called candidiasis, or vaginal candidiasis. Its common symptoms are vaginal itchiness, soreness, rashes, pain during urination or sexual intercourse, and a white, cheese-like vaginal discharge.

When the situation is ripe, Candida fungi can get to unhealthy, infectious levels. This happens often when the host has a compromised immune system, or contraceptive pills, antibiotics or steroids. Concentrations of Candida can be found in the warm, moist areas of the body, like the vagina, the mouth and the armpits.

When they become very abundant in the mouth, the infection is called an oral thrush. At other times, it manifests as skin and diaper rash, or as a nail-bed infection. The skin usually has natural oils and substances that protect against fungi, but these may be depleted with excessive washing, the use of harsh chemicals, or by skin cuts or any skin breakdown.

Antifungal medicines are most often used to treat yeast infections on the skin surface. Infections of the nail-bed generally take longer to treat. Rarely, but significantly, a yeast infection may get into the bloodstream. This can cause a potentially dangerous systemic condition that must not be ignored. Stronger antifungals are the standard treatment.

A systemic infection will probably result in the prescription of amphotericin B, the most common treatment. For milder yeast infections, drugs of the "-azole" family will suffice. This family includes tioconazole, butoconazole, miconazole, fluconazole, and clotrimazole. Fluconazole is the most commonly used of this group. It's often given as a single oral dose to effectively eliminate the yeast infection. The other drugs in the "-azole" family are found in antifungal lotions and creams, to be topically applied some number of times until the infection clears up. Vaginal suppositories contain different combinations of these compounds. These drugs are recommended as both prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

A large number of effective home remedies for yeast infections have been in use for many decades or even centuries. The list of natural remedies is comprehensive and includes vinegar douches, vaginal creams made with boric acid, garlic and/or tea tree oil. Rounding out this collection are probiotics such as yogurts that contain lactobacillus.

After about a week of using these natural remedies, many women find relief from the symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection. The efficacy of these home treatments is increased when women take the following measures to prevent aggravating the infection:

-Avoid taking baths, especially hot tub baths and whirlpools. Showers are preferable.

-Let your skin breath. Avoid tight-fitting underwear, pantyhose and pants.

-Avoid scented feminine hygiene products such as vaginal sprays, tampons and pads. Perfumes irritate.

-Boost the immune system with vitamins and supplements. E.g. vitamins A and E, garlic, pau d'arco and echinacea.

-Do not douche.

-Practice safe sex by using condoms.

-Wear underwear made of cotton, not synthetic material.

-Get out of wet clothes immediately.

The yeast infection treatments, and the home remedies, are highly effective in inhibiting yeast infections. However, should the yeast infection recurs within two months, or if does not disappear within a week of home treatment, consult a doctor.

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