When YEAST Strikes!

Last week I had a ridiculously painful yeast infection. You know it’s coming on when everything down near the genitals gets inflamed, irritated, and itchy. Discharge thickens significantly, and the smell is much more musky. Yeast infections are extremely common and most people with a vagina will get at least one in their child bearing years. It is the same thing as thrush and athletes foot, only occurring in the vagina. It is not an STD or an STI and it has nothing to do with hygiene.

Yeast infections occur when there is an overgrowth of yeast. In the vagina, this happens when the environment is disrupted. Increased moisture, weakened immune system, or an imbalance of the pH levels can all cause this.

There are many treatment options for a yeast infection. Prescription wise, you might be given a single or multiple dose antifungal/antibiotic.

However, a yeast infection is relatively easy to treat by yourself. I’ve had a handful of yeast infections so far (booo) and have so far been able to manage it. Here’s what has worked for me.

1. Over the counter: You can get an over the counter yeast infection treatment to kick start the curing process and reduce the pain. If you are in a lot of pain, the one-dose ovules that are inserted up into the vagina can bring a sigh of relief. Monistat makes a pretty solid line, and the generic dupes (like Equate) are just as good. Just look at the ingredients and concentration percentages on the back to make sure that they are the same.

2. At home: However, over the counter treatments can be very expensive, and in my experience, take just as long to work as home treatments (1 week – yes, it definitely sucks). I have found a killer duo that has brought me a lot of relief and gotten my sweet parts back to normal.

External – natural, PLAIN, nonsweetened (SUGAR FREE!) yogurt. Apply directly to burning/itching spots on the vulva. It also helps to eat lots of yogurt!
Internal – this is going to sound strange, but….garlic is amazing.

Peel a clove–I prefer larger ones as they are easier to get out–and stick it up into your vagina while you sleep. After 9-10 hours, remove it. The anti-fungal properties of garlic are absolutely magical. Do this for a week.

Some websites will advise that you slice the garlic. I do not. I have heard many a burning horror story when people cut the garlic open for more intense saturation.

As far as getting it out, I didn’t have a problem getting them out, even the small cloves. If you need a little help, try pushing like you’re giving birth to it while your finger is in there. Then latch it and pull it out. If you’re worried about getting it out (you needn’t be – it cannot get lost or go anywhere) you could also wrap some cheese cloth around it with some twine. Leave the twine hanging outside of the vagina like a tampon string so you can simply pull it out when you’re done.

Don’t forget to sport your cotton undies while you have a yeast infection, avoid yeasty foods (*ahem* beer) and drink lotsssss of water!

Wishing you speedy relief,

26 thoughts on “When YEAST Strikes!

  1. You have no idea how thankful I am for the at home remedies! I always used to get so nervous I would get an infection and have to shell out lots of mney, or ask my mom, which would be too awkward for me :P

  2. Up until a couple of years ago I didn’t know this but us men can get it too. Itching on the penis head. When the doctor told me at first thought he was kidding. Gave me a lotion and I don’t really remember if pills. My recommendations is wash before and after sex. Is worth the precautions.

  3. Another thing you can try is a warm bath with 2 cups of vinegar, if you’d rather not shove something inside of you or slop yoghurt on your vagina :P

  4. This is really helpful. My mom gets them all the time, and I’m just dreading the time when I do. Knowing there are home remedies that work makes it much less scary for me. :)

  5. I’ve done the garlic… works like magic! It’s amazing. The only thing that isn’t amazing is the taste of garlic in your mouth in the morning… Ew!

  6. The entire clove of garlic? What, like side ways? Do you peel it at all?
    Doesn’t matter I still think this is a great post! ‘Should do one for other common infections like UTIs, or Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)aka”Honey Mooners Syndrome.”
    Once you get an infection it tends to enjoy coming back to visit again later. Prevention is key! Knowing how to tell when you’re getting one & how to cope is a life saver.
    Btw, ty for everything you do!

  7. Probiotics help a lot too.

    By the way guys, you can get it via sex. It’s very unpleasant. I had a burning itching feeling in the urethra. There was just a bit of something that would drip out every now and then. I thought I had the clap. I thought my gal at the time had some explaining to do. I went and got tested, and I was clean. That’s when I found out you can catch it. It goes away after a couple days though.

  8. For those that live in “socialist” countries that provide health care I would suggest checking in with a gynecologist. BV gives similar symptoms (tough the smell and discharge is different). Swabbing the pussy for cultures guarantees you get the right treatment.

  9. Thank you so much, I’ve got a doc appointment tomorrow but this is like the 3rd time I’ve had one and i’m 16, my mum was the same -.- but i will be sure to keep in mind the home remedies. xx

  10. At the risk of cock-blocking a billion men, I have to sell my sex out: semen aggravates vaginal yeast. The normal pH of the average human vagina is around 5 to 6 (slightly acidic). Human semen is around 9 (slightly alkaline). The acidic environment of the vagina keeps yeasts at bay in 2 ways: 1)It’s too acidic for yeast to grow; and 2) the acid level promotes healthy bacterial growth, such as lactobacillus, that keep yeasts in check. Lactobacillus is the bacteria that turns milk into yogurt, and it survives the digestive tract, which is acidic. After eating yogurt, some of it passes from the urethra into the vagina, where conditions are usually good for bacterial growth.
    After having unprotected sex (assuming the man ejaculates into the woman’s vagina), the pH of the semen can alter the vaginal pH enough to deplete most of the healthy bacteria, and promote yeast growth.
    Condoms aren’t necessarily a solution for women who experience frequent yeast infections. The often contain spermicides and lubricants that can also kill beneficial vaginal bacteria, as well as adjust vaginal pH.
    If you experience frequent yeast infections, try douching after sex with diluted vinegar (a couple tablespoons of distilled white vinegar in 8 ounces of water). Another option is a douche of diluted hydrogen peroxide (2 – 4 tablespoons to 8 ounces of water).
    Hydrogen peroxide is an indiscriminate disinfectant, however, and will kill all microbes, as well as healthy tissue. (the tiny amount of hydrogen peroxide used isn’t nearly enough to do damage.) It has a pH of around 6.2, and it won’t kill all the microbes, so it can lower pH without the odor of vinegar. The vinegar odor is hardly noticeable in my experience.

  11. Quick question…what if you are really sensitive down there??? I have found that I am really sensitive to a lot of lubes and condoms, so I always hesitate about putting stuff in my vagina! Have you ever had any problems with burning when you put garlic up in your vagina? Great tip by the way. Had way too many yeast infections and it is costly dealing with them as a student, so this tip is much appreciated :)

  12. “If you need a little help, try pushing like you’re giving birth to it while your finger is in there.”

    I laughed so hard. Seriously though, yeast infections suck.

  13. I’m glad you mentioned that yeast infections are NOT due to hygiene. I get a yeast infection about 2-4 times yearly, but I wash regularly with a mild soap. No harsh chemicals, almost always a shower. I used to think I was doing something wrong (heaven forbid the few times I got a yeast infection after masturbation or sex-yes no STDs) and was always fearful of the smell. However I figured out that it was somewhat regular and I think I might just produce a little more yeast than other women. However, when I get the itches, I make sure to gently lift my clitoral hood, clean out debris extra carefully, wash twice a day, instead of once or every other day, and after every bathroom break apply a little “lube” (petroleum jelly or aquaphor, not lube for interccourse) to reduce friction and ease itching, paying just a little extra attention. When I do this at the first signs of an infection, I usually reduce the time by 2-4 days. :)

  14. Love your blog! Great tips, I’ve heard most of these before as I’ve researched it quite a bit. I always try a home remedy before buying something chemical or over the counter. But the thing I’ve used that works for me I’ve only found reference online to once – Tea Tree. My mom recommended that one. You put a little bit (we’re talking drops here and there, not soaking) onto a tampon and use as normal. Not just once, repeatedly. And for a natural “lube” to help take away the itch – pure coconut oil. You get the added plus that it also smells nice without scents but isn’t overpowering like a lot of scented pads.

  15. Thank you Laci! I’ve recently gotten 2 yeast infections within 2 months and it’s such a horrible experience. Only, I really have no signs or symptoms until my bf and I are having foreplay or sex and he fingers me. The lube that I produce is much thicker than normal and white, as you can imagine. Other than that, I have NO itching, swelling, or change in everyday discharge, etc. It really puts a damper on our sex lives and I’m now constantly worrying every time we have sex. Hopefully I can find something that works for me. It’s great to know that I’m not alone and that I’m not a freak either.

  16. Just so all you girls out there know, but thrush infections can start with an imbalance in the normal pH of the vagina. You can buy some products from your chemist that return the vagina’s pH to normal which helps nip the infection in the bud before it turns into a full blown case of thrush. Semen is alkaline, and can alter the pH of the vagina after lots of unprotected sex. Using these products every now and then can really help to prevent nasty cases of thrush.
    I have used a product called Aci-jel for a while now and it works like magic.

  17. I have Mulescum on my vagina it hurts what do I do.I had it there for months and I is not getting better.I have done everything nothing will help pleas help!!!!!!!!

  18. How did someone figure out that garlic makes yeast infections better? Did they just think yeast infections were vampiric? Or was someone just really lonely and happened to have garlic and a yeast infection?

  19. 0 1 people found fonllwiog review helpful: Resources, February 2, 2010 a0 (WV) a0a0 review : Though time women terms male yeast infections men . book lays out everything need know struggle problem. a bit graphic very helpful. Dale customers find helpful reviewsa0 review helpful ?a0 | a0

  20. Thank you soooo much!! I just got my third one since I started having sex. This is the worst one by far. Usually around period time everything goes hay wire. I don’t want to spend money on pills and creams that are going to make it worse for me.I read bad reviews on monistat and how self dosing can be bad for you. This way I can take care of it and not take as much risk. Plus those things scare me so much.

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