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.
Yeast Infection Myths And Misconceptions
When it comes to dealing with intimate health issues like yeast infections, young women are relying on advice thats plain wrong and even harmful.
More than half 53% of young women say they dont know how to deal with a yeast infection, and two out of three women dont know it can be cured with an over-the-counter treatment. With all the information out there, finding the right answers can be confusing and overwhelming.
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Percent Of Antibiotics Prescribed In The United States Are Unnecessary
According to the centers for disease control and prevention , at least 30 percent of antibiotics prescribed in the United States are unnecessary. These are 47 million excess prescriptions each year! A study that analyzed antibiotic use in the United states found that most of these unnecessary antibiotics are prescribed for respiratory conditions caused by viruses. These conditions typically include common colds, viral sore throats, bronchitis, and sinus and ear infections. All these infections are caused by viruses and do not respond to antibiotics .
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Yeast Medications And Antibiotics
If you take a yeast medication while you’re on antibiotics, it may reduce the yeast population in the infected area and alleviate your symptoms. However, as long as you’re on the course of antibiotics, the bacteria level will remain artificially low — meaning your yeast infection may spring right back up. It’s rarely dangerous to take yeast medication while using antibiotics, but it’s often pointless.
What To Expect From Prescription Treatment
If you have severe symptoms or OTC medication doesnt clear up your infection, you may need a prescription medication. Your healthcare provider may also recommend taking antifungal medications regularly if you get frequent yeast infections.
Prescription yeast infection medications, such as fluconazole , are taken by mouth. Youll usually only need one dose, but you may be prescribed two doses for very severe symptoms.
Other prescription yeast infection treatments include vaginal antifungal medications you can use for up to two weeks.
Your doctor may also recommend boric acid, another vaginal treatment, that can help treat yeast infections that dont respond to antifungal medications.
If you get a yeast infection while pregnant, OTC topical treatments can provide relief. Your healthcare provider wont prescribe fluconazole, as it can increase the risk of birth defects.
Still, its important to follow up with your healthcare provider if youre pregnant and have a yeast infection thats not getting better.
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Who Is At Higher Risk Of Developing A Yeast Infection
Any woman at any age can get a yeast infection and most will experience at least one in their lifetime, but it is more than likely to occur in women after puberty and before menopause.
Another risk factor is having higher estrogen levels.
You may have higher estrogen levels if you are pregnant, taking high-dose estrogen birth control pills, or undergoing estrogen hormone therapy.
Diabetes or a weakened immune system can also put you at an increased risk for yeast infections.
Our physicians can prescribe antibiotics for various conditions, but only if necessary. Chat with a provider to see which treatment option is best for you.
Vaginal Yeast Infection Diagnosis
To help determine the cause of vaginal infection or irritation, the doctor usually asks the woman about her symptoms and performs a physical and pelvic examination. The doctor usually also tests the woman’s urine and samples of vaginal discharge. Before the exam, sexual intercourse and douching should be avoided for one to two days if possible to avoid complicating the diagnosis.
The doctor may also ask the following questions:
- When did this condition begin? Has the discharge changed during the condition?
- What does the discharge look like? What is the color and consistency? Does it have an odor?
- Do you have pain, itching, or burning?
- Does your sexual partner, if you have one, have discharge from his penis?
- Do you have many sexual partners?
- Do you use condoms?
- What helps relieve the discharge?
- Do you take frequent baths?
- Have you tried over-the-counter medications?
- What other medications do you take?
- Have you changed detergents or soaps recently?
- Do you often wear tight underwear or pants/jeans?
- Have you had similar symptoms in the past?
Most Candidal infections can be diagnosed without laboratory tests. The following diagnostic tests the doctor may be administer at the time of examination.
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Women who have vaginal yeast infections that recur should seek professional medical help. Recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis is a condition defined as four or more proven episodes of vaginal yeast infections per year.
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Can I Take Yeast Medication While On Antibiotics
If you read the indications label on a bottle of antibiotics, it will advise you of the risk of yeast infection, and often some things you can do to mitigate this risk. If you develop a yeast infection during your course of antibiotics, those warnings can make it natural to worry about a drug interaction between your anti-yeast medication and the antibiotics. Consult your doctor.
How Are Vaginal Yeast Infections Treated
If youre 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. Its important to take the medicine for the whole time its prescribed. If you stop taking it too soon, the infection could come back. If youre 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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Which Antibiotics Cause Yeast Infections
Do all antibiotics cause yeast infections? Its a good questionespecially if there are multiple options available to treat your condition. Broad-spectrum antibiotics are most likely to throw off your bodys natural bacterial balance, such as:
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Prevent Yeast Infection From Antibiotics
If you must take antibiotics, there are a few steps you can do that can help to prevent yeast infection from antibiotics. The protocol below is very simple and has shown to be very helpful for many. Taking antibiotics is known to create a problematic environment in the body where candida yeasts can thrive and overgrow. The steps below can help to mitigate this by helping your body to naturally fight back.
How to prevent yeast infections from antibiotics:
Confirm with your doctor that antibiotics are unnecessary. According to research, at least 30 percent of antibiotics prescribed in the United States are unnecessary . Taking probiotics with antibiotics may help to prevent yeast infections. Make sure you do not have common vitamins and minerals deficiencies needed for a healthy immune system function, especially: Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, Iron. Switch to the candida diet during and after the course of the antibiotics. Pay close attention to foods to avoid that can feed the candida yeast. Women: to prevent vaginal yeast infections, follow the Vaginal yeast infection prevention protocol.
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Can You Treat A Yeast Infection And Bacterial Vaginosis At The Same Time
For an effective BV treatment, prescription medications such as metronidazole, clindamycin, and tinidazole can be effective. As a general rule, antifungal creams, ointments, tablets, and suppositories will do for yeast infections what they have for other infections: restore the balance of bacteria and yeast in a vaginal area, and eliminate symptoms usually.
The Issue With Antibiotics
Antibiotics have been a huge triumph for worldwide public health. They treat many bacterial infections that were once severe and life-threatening illnesses. However, with the growing use of antibiotics worldwide, antibiotic resistance has become a major issue. When a person takes antibiotics, especially for too short a course, the weakest bacteria are killed, but the strongest, most resistant ones may survive and multiply. Overuse of antibiotics is one of the largest causes of drug-resistant bacteria. A 2016 study stated that over 30 percent of prescribed antibiotics are not needed . Antibiotics should be used only when a doctor prescribes them for a bacterial infection. Chronic use of antibiotics can lead to a disrupted microbiome as all of the native, good bacteria are killed along with the bacterial infection. When one type of organism is killed, the entire microbiome goes into flux, which can lead to a candida takeover and illness.
A doctor might use the presence of a few other symptoms like body aches or a fever, the duration of the illness, and specific lab tests to help determine if an ailment is because of a bacteria, virus, or other disease or pathogen process.
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Probiotics With Antibiotics: Our Recommendation
Using antibiotics is one of the most common causes of yeast infections . If you are planning to take antibiotics, we encourage you to consult with your doctor, share the below information and consider taking probiotics with antibiotics as they may be helpful to prevent yeast infections.
- Using probiotics to prevent yeast infection was suggested by the medical literature to be useful.
- A common best practice done in most studies is using a mixture of the Lactobacillus probiotic strains , which are considered the best probiotic to prevent yeast infections.
- The Lactobacillus probiotic complex we use in our protocol for yeast infection prevention is FloraTrex and it has shown to be very safe and effective. FloraTrex contains 23 key top studied probiotic strains shown by research to be both safe and effective, but also use a 100% vegan probiotic strains, so there are no dairy, soy, wheat, or gluten or other allergens. This is where many probiotic products fail, and one of the reasons of the digestive issues such as gas and bloating people experience when using dairy based probiotics. Learn more about Florarex.
Yeast Infections And Antibiotics
Candida Yeast Infection & Antibiotics Connection: Can Antibiotics Cause Candida Yeast Infections?
Yes, it is true that antibiotic use can lead to candida infections, I have done a video on the topic which you can watch here. This article will discuss antibiotics, ways in which you can get exposed to them knowingly or unknowingly, and detail all that you need to know about antibiotics and candida connection.Before I continue with this article, you should know I’ve recently compiled a list of science-backed ways to get rid of candida yeast infections. You can if you haven’t yet.
Antibiotics what these are?
Antibiotics are exactly what the name says they are: Anti = against, biotic = living component these are chemical compounds, some of which kill good and bad bacteria, others kill fungi, while some others kill protozoans . Generally, these are medications that are used to treat infections. In some instances, certain antibiotics can be used to even kill cancer cells and form a part of chemotherapy for cancer. Antibiotics cannot kill viruses and are of no use against viral infections.
Antibiotics like metronidazole kill protozoa as well as bacteria. So taking an antiprotozoal antibiotic will also kill bacteria.
How antibiotics cause candida infection?
When we unknowingly take antibiotics
What to do if you have to take antibiotics at some point of time?
Can antibiotics kill candida?
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List Of Antibiotics That Cause Yeast Infections
Broad-spectrum antibiotics, rather than antibiotics with a narrow target, are more likely to lead to yeast infections because the antibiotic will likely kill many types of bacteria. These antibiotics dont distinguish between bad bacteria and good bacteria. Medications that increase your chances of getting a yeast infection include:
- Certain types of penicillin including amoxicillin and augmentin
- Steroids such as prednisone
How Long Do Yeast Infections Last
Mild yeast infections typically clear up within a few days, while more severe yeast infections can last up to two weeks without treatment.
Most yeast infections fully develop within 13 days. Some recurring forms of yeast infection will advance faster, and you may begin to recognize the symptoms earlier on. Treatment can begin as soon as your doctor confirms you have a yeast infection.
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Remedies And Treatments For Yeast Infections
The most effective treatment for yeast infections is a dedicated course of antifungal medication. However, you can also try several home remedies if you are waiting to see a doctor for a diagnosis and prescription. Here are six treatments for yeast infections.
Many yeast infections occur when your immune system is busy or damaged. Itâs common to experience yeast infections while on antibiotics because your bodyâs normal bacteria die off.
Yogurt is another healthy source of probiotics. Just make sure that you eat the yogurt. It doesnât offer any benefits when applied topically, and the sugar thatâs present in all yogurt may cause other infections as well.
Apply Saltwater Rinses
Yeast infections can sometimes be reduced and soothed by rinsing the area gently with saltwater. Mix a half teaspoon of salt into a cup of warm water. For oral thrush, you can gently swish the mixture around in your mouth. For other areas of your body, you can soak the infected area for several minutes, then rinse thoroughly.
Apply Coconut Oil
Coconut oil seems to act as an antifungal agent both in the lab and in people.
You can gently apply a thin layer of coconut oil to the site of the yeast infection. This may help kill off some of the yeast and may soothe irritated, dry, uncomfortable skin, allowing it to heal.
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Why Do Antibiotics Cause Yeast Infections
When there is an increase in yeast, the balance of microorganisms in your vaginal microbiome changes and can lead to yeast infection. Some of the bacteria are meant to keep the amount of yeast balanced with the rest of the microorganisms present. Good bacteria, or bacteria serving a purpose, might be killed when you take a broad-spectrum antibiotic. When this happens, due to the imbalance of good bacteria present to fend off excess yeast, this will all the yeast to grow in an uncontrolled way, leading to a yeast infection.
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What Causes A Yeast Infection
Antibiotics are one of the most common culprits in causing yeast infections, because they destroy vaginal bacteria and thereby disrupt the balance of power among the vaginal microorganisms. This balance is also affected by hormone levels, so women are more prone to yeast infections if theyre using hormonal contraceptives, during pregnancy, or just prior to menstruation. Yeast infections are also more common in women with compromised immune systems due to illnesses like diabetes, AIDS, or cancer. In fact, anything that weakens your immune systemstress, lack of sleep, consumption of alcohol, and even refined sugarcan lead to an overgrowth of yeast.
When To See A Doctor
Yeast infections should go away within a few days of treatments. If youâre still experiencing symptoms of a yeast infection after several days of treatment, or if it seems to be getting worse, reach out to your doctor. You may need a stronger course of medication if the infection is serious or spreading.
If antifungal medicines are not working, there is also a chance that your infection is not a yeast infection, but something more serious that will need antibiotics.
BJOG: âLactobacilli-containing vaginal probiotics to cure or prevent bacterial or fungal vaginal dysbiosis: a systematic review and recommendations for future trial designs.â
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: âVaginal Candidiasis.â
Egyptian Nursing Journal: âEffect of ingestion of yogurt containing Lactobacillus acidophilus on vulvovaginal candidiasis among women attending a gynecological clinic.â
Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine: âIn vitro anti-inflammatory and skin protective properties of Virgin coconut oil.â
Mayo Clinic: âOral thrush.â
Mayo Clinic: âTea tree oil.â
Mayo Clinic: âVaginitis.â
Mayo Clinic: âYeast infection .â
Phytotherapy Research: âIn Vitro Activity of Tea Tree Oil Vaginal Suppositories against Candida spp. and Probiotic Vaginal Microbiota.â
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