As a researcher and author, John provides information in an easy-to-understand way that helps readers understand their conditions.
Yeast Infections at a Glance
- Women typically get yeast infections more than men and the most common is vaginal yeast infection.
- Typical symptoms are; itching, redness, swelling, inflammation, thick whitish discharge, pain when urinating and painful / uncomfortable intercourse.
- Yeast infections are caused by the overgrowth of the candida albicans yeast fungus naturally found in our bodies. This occurs when the body's friendly v bad bacteria environment is out of balance.
- The underlying issues that can trigger this imbalance are things such as; good bacteria depletion, high blood sugar, lowered immune system, certain drugs, and hormonal imbalances.
- Mainstream drugs generally address the symptoms and not the root causes so that unless these underlying issues are addressed the infection can return.
- More women are turning to natural ways to get rid of their yeast infections. These include things like diet, lifestyle, probiotics, and other home remedies described here.
Getting Rid of Your Yeast Infection
Here, you'll discover 10 simple and very effective yeast infection home remedies that many folks have used successfully to eliminate their infections. However in order to fully appreciate how these simple home remedies can help to eliminate naturally, you first need to understand a bit more about this nasty infection.
So, before getting into the details of how to get rid of a yeast infection fast and naturally at home, let's briefly go through:
- Symptoms to look out for
- Why it's so important to get a proper diagnosis
- The cause of the actual yeast infection
- Underlying issues that trigger infections (very important)
- Mainstream treatment and its shortcomings.
pain during intercourse
thick white discharge
pain when urinating
A yeast-like fungus called Candida albicans actually causes yeast infections. This is a naturally occurring fungus found in the human body, mainly in the gut, but also in warm, moist locations such as the vagina, anus, mouth, under skin folds, and so on.
You normally don't have to worry about the Candida fungi because they are usually kept from overgrowing into an actual infection by the millions of friendly bacteria in your body. However if this environmental balance of good bacteria versus bad bacteria is upset in any way, then the Candida can overgrow and proliferate throughout your body causing yeast infection, sometimes called 'candida,' 'candidiasis,' or 'thrush.'
The Underlying Causes
Anything that helps to upset this environmental balance and/or that feeds the Candida albicans can be recognised as an underlying cause of yeast infection. Here are just some of the most important ones:
- High blood sugar levels, because the yeast feeds on sugar.
- Beneficial bacteria depletion—antibiotics kill the good guys as well as the bad guys.
- Immune system breakdown, through a number of factors including illness and stress.
- Hormonal imbalance through pregnancy, menstruation, or menopause.
- Drug therapy affecting the above. This includes antibiotics, steroids, the pill, HRT, and immuno-suppressive drugs.
You can see now how important it is to address these root causes if you are to have any chance of banishing your infection for good.
Mainstream Treatment for Yeast Infections
Naturally, the first solution for most women with yeast infection is in the form of over-the-counter anti-fungal medicines. These are usually in the form of things like creams, sprays, tablets, and so on, depending on where the infection is. Some typical brands include:
While these medicines can clear the symptoms for many women in the quoted timeframes, there are one or two drawbacks:
- They do have some negative side effects—they tend to focus on the infection symptoms rather than the underlying cause(s), and the candida fungus can build up a resistance to the drugs over time. This means that many women can suffer from recurring infections.
- Also there's the ongoing cost, of course.
This is why there is an increasing interest in getting rid of yeast infections naturally by using home remedies. Read on to learn what these are.
Note: It is estimated that as many as 66% of women who buy and use over-the-counter drugs to eliminate yeast infection actually don't have candida, rather they have some other problem that these medicines are not meant to treat.
This is why I said at the start that you need to get a professional diagnosis before you begin using OTC medications.
Top 10 Ways to Get Rid of a Yeast Infection at Home
More and more women (and men) are utilising natural home remedies. Not only are there home remedies to eliminate the symptoms of candida but there are also natural ways to address the underlying issues that trigger the fungal overgrowth. Below are the top ten ways to get rid of your yeast infection fast and naturally.
1. Eat Cranberries
Cranberries are great for fighting yeast infections. The flavonoids in cranberries help to strengthen your immune system. In turn, this helps to fight the bad bacteria more effectively. This includes cranberries in any form, including fresh, frozen, dried cranberries, or in juice-form.
2. Reduce Your Stress Levels
Reducing your stress levels is very important in curing your yeast infection. Stress can lower your immune system, thus allowing the candida to overgrow. To do that, make sure you do all that you can to reduce the stress in your life including: exercising, eating a proper diet (see below) rescheduling your activities if they are too much, getting proper sleep, taking proper time out for relaxation, meditating, and so forth.
3. Change Your Diet
Change to a diet that avoids foods and ingredients that cause candida fungi to overgrow. This means avidly checking food labels and avoiding or seriously reducing the following:
- Sugar in all its forms, especially candies, soda, chocolates, and even vegetables like baked beans. This includes anything that contains fructose.
- Artificial sweeteners.
- Refined carbohydrates, because they breakdown into sugar.
- Products containing yeast.
- Dairy products—they often contain hormones and antibiotics.
- Processed foods.
- Foods containing preservatives, flavorings, or artificial colors.
- Mono-sodium glutamate (MSG)
- Stimulants like coffee, energy drinks, cigarettes, and so forth.
Note: In terms of meat, poultry, fish, and vegetables you should make a real effort to eat only organic, since modern farming methods tend to treat with antibiotics, hormones and pesticides.
4. Take Probiotics for a Yeast Infection
Probiotics are a great way to help replenish the beneficial bacteria in your gut. They are available in the pharmacy or at the local health food store and contain live friendly bacteria. You can normally get them in tablet, capsule, powder, and liquid forms—it is always best to get the best quality ones. Don't sacrifice price for quality when it comes to your health!
5. Consider Yogurt as a Probiotic
Natural yogurt is a well-known source of live cultures. However it must be free from sugar, coloring, fruit of any kind, and any other additives. Always check that the label says that it contains live active cultures. The beneficial bacteria that is especially good for yeast is lactobacillus acidophilus found in true natural yogurt.
One of the best ways to ensure you get the very best is to make it yourself. You can easily Google this or purchase a natural yogurt making kit online through Amazon at a very reasonable price.
Interestingly, as well as rebalancing your gut flora, you can apply the yogurt directly over the site of the infection. You can apply it inside, as well—simply coat a regular tampon and insert overnight.
6. Use Tea Tree Oil for Yeast Infections
Tea tree oil has some very powerful anti-fungal properties. You can purchase tea tree oil at the local pharmacy and at certain health stores. However don't use it if you are pregnant, and also don't apply to areas where the skin is broken.
7. Use Garlic
Raw garlic has natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.
- It can be eaten to help kill the fungus in your gut.
- It can also be applied topically—peeled and crushed into a paste and applied over the area affected.
- It can also be inserted overnight in the vagina to help kill-off the candida there. Just wrap some muslin around a peeled garlic clove and tie securely with dental floss. Leave a tail of dental floss for easy removal.
8. Consider Herbal Home Remedies for Yeast Infections
There are very many herbs that contain excellent natural properties to help you get rid of the symptoms, as well as in preventing further infections. Here's a small sample:
- pau d'arco
- black walnut
Get these and more at your herbalist or local health food store.
9. Use Apple Cider Vinegar
An apple cider remedy discourages candida growth by helping to rebalance your body pH. It must be raw apple cider vinegar that hasn't been distilled or pasteurized. You should be able to get this at health food stores.
- To take internally, just add 2-3 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar to a large glass of water and take 2-3 times per day.
- To take externally, just put half a cup into a shallow warm bath and bathe for around 20 minutes, gently lapping the water against the affected part.
10. Use Coconut Oil for Yeast Infection
Virgin coconut oil is high in caprylic and lauric acid, thus giving it very powerful anti-fungal and antimicrobial properties. This is ideal for combating yeast infection. Coconut oil can be used in your diet and especially to cook with.
Note: Make sure you don't use the hydrogenated type, and only use virgin coconut oil.
Additional Tips on How to Prevent Yeast Infections
As a bonus, alongside the top ten, here are some more things to consider in preventing yeast infections. These are founded on the principle that candida just loves warm, moist, humid conditions and an alkaline environment:
- Avoid wearing tight jeans, pants, and panties.
- In turn, wear loser-fitting jeans and pants that allow your parts to breathe.
- Wear cotton panties that also let the area breathe.
- Maintain a clean and dry genital area at all times by washing with warm water and soap daily.
- Change out of damp sweaty swimwear or gym-wear as soon as you possibly can.
- Stop using scented feminine sprays, soaps, gels, douches, pads, tampons, and so forth. These can both irritate the fragile membranes and upset the pH (alkaline/acidic) balance.
Don't ignore these things as they form an important part of your overall approach to get rid of your yeast infection at home and prevent future occurrences.
Mercola on How to Eliminate a Yeast Infection Naturally at Home
Yeast Infection Poll
The content of this Hub is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to be a substitute for proper medical diagnosis, treatment, or advice. Remember to always consult your healthcare provider, physician, and/or doctor before taking any medications, natural remedies, supplements, or before making any major changes to your diet.
© 2012 JCielo
Katy on August 20, 2018:
My first yeast infection I was five I had a bad cold and my doctor prescribed my medication and I gues the side affects or the way I rested was I caught a yeast infection it was so horrible I remember one day I was itching really bad so I went to the bathroom and I thought I was just dirty down there so I just took a show and when I wiped myself with the towel chunky looking cottage cheese discharge was on the towel I was terrified but I told my mom and right away we went to the doctor and she prescribed me one pill and in a couple days it was gone but now it’s back and I don’t not want wanna keep going to then doctors because it’s kind kinda embarrasing to keep telling doctor “oh I got another yeast infection” because I take a shower 2 times a day and I don’t put that much soap on my towel when I wash down there Idk what’s happening with my body but I cant take the itching and burning and I have school that sucks but I’ll take this advice Andy if it doesn’t work right is ill just go to my doctor
L McCoy on November 04, 2017:
Extremely helpful hub. Dealing with the root causes of yeast infections works. Antifungal creams that only address symptoms are typical of the approach of most doctors and futile. Thank you for providing this info on natural remedies. It is the best approach.
Isvaiyah from Yogyakarta on July 27, 2016:
Thanks for amazing information, Sir!
FYI. Active substances in raw garlic that help tackle a yeast infection are called allicins.
A study published in FEMS microbiology letters showed that allicins work as similar as fluconazole. However, more study is needed to say for sure.
Jo Lim on June 22, 2016:
I suffer many times from yeast infection due to medications. Good to know there are other natural ways to combat it besides taking antibiotics. I'm going to try them. Great hub, appreciate your sharing =)
Sara on May 22, 2016:
I'm going drink a lot of cranberry juice!
Marvelousme19 on April 18, 2016:
I am going through right now and i just want it to be over. Thanks for the tips i will try some of them
Butterfly on April 18, 2016:
I woke feeling like a burning up inside of me,,
Never had a yeast infection,,
Went to the doctor they said no sign of infection,,
To keep using the monastat seven day plane,, was feeling better after two full uses,,, but it burned!
What do I do?
I started it again still feeling the same
Could this be due to the meds I use daily? Xanx ?
I never in the past ate sugary snacks, drinks, but for the last couple weeks since my auto accident I've been overwhelmed with stress,,,
Lading drinking my water like normal,
Could this be the whole issue?
No name added on April 07, 2016:
I am 15 years old and I have a yeast infection in my vaginal area. It itches and hurts when I pee. I don't want to tell my mother for I am scared at what she will say. So thank you for the tips
Joyette Helen Fabien from Dominica on March 18, 2016:
Great hubs; detailed and informative. The suggestions call for a real makeover of the diet, but the benefits ought to be worth it.
Thanks for sharing.
Michelle on January 25, 2016:
Hi, I am a 29 year old who has frequent yeast infections and the medicine never seems to work for me and am looking for something I can do on a daily basis to keep me yeast infection free. I also suffer Grave disease somebody help me find relief, in going out of my mind. Thanks in advance
aubri on July 23, 2015:
Im 17. This is my first yeast infection. Im kinda scared to put tea tree oil down there bc I feel like it would burn but ive been eating yogurt and garlic bread. Lol that really hasn't been working though. Ill try it & give feed back.
Canita Prough from Texas on July 21, 2015:
I struggled with this issue for years. I found that taking two oregano gel tabs daily will keep me balanced. It works for me, but you would need to try it for yourself. I keep the gel tabs in the freezer so I don't belch oregano all day.
Cheryl Simonds from Connecticut on July 11, 2015:
Great ideas. I love this hub. Thanks for sharing all of this information! Cherylone
Meagan Elaine on June 19, 2015:
I love home remedies thanks for sharing
Ana Maria Orantes from Miami Florida on June 15, 2015:
Thank you for writing about what it is good to eat and drink when you have gout. You did a great job making this hub. Some people are going to get good result with your helpful information. Thank you for sharing what you know mister JCielo.
Summer LaSalle from USA on June 08, 2015:
I am sending this article to my cousin who is needing some serious relief right now, and I am sure she will find some help from the copious amounts of information. Great hub! Marked up and useful!
Thelma Alberts from Germany on May 11, 2015:
This is definitely a very useful and informative hub. I did not know that cranberries and coconut oil can help get rid of this illness. Thanks for sharing.
Keisha Hunter from Kingston, Jamaica on May 09, 2015:
This is definitely a great hub! It might be more prudent to stick to probiotics and natural yogurt as well as dietary change, however, since some of the other suggestions can cause other problems, especially the apple cider if the body is already acidic.
DebMartin on April 28, 2015:
Good info. Making my own yogurt has been very helpful for me. It has been my experience that medications, prescribed or over the counter, don't work for long unless you change your diet. Question about Tea Tree Oil. I know it's an anti-fungal, but just how does one use it? Also, I'm seeing a lot about coconut oil theses days. Seems to fix a multitude of ailments. Do you think it really is a miracle oil or just at the top of the fad list right now?
kea on April 23, 2015:
Thanks for the tips. I'm hoping to try it cause I need something to work. So I'll try it tomorrow. Thanks again.
Karebear.345 on March 25, 2015:
This helped me greatly thanks so much! But one problem I always make sure it's clean and well and I've never had intercorse I'm a virgin..... How could this have happened?
Helen on March 20, 2015:
Well I do believe I have a yeast infection but I don't see how... I just had a miscarriage and was gave antibiotics because of an infection wouldn't protect me for a little while??
Emma Southworth from Manchester on February 20, 2015:
Really good information JCielo
Penny Godfirnon from Southern Iowa on September 19, 2014:
I learned a lot of this in a herbal class. It is all so true.
drsohel from Dhaka, BD on April 30, 2013:
Very good and informative hub. Well structured too. Thanks for sharing.
Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 19, 2013:
Most informative and such interesting information for one to follow thanks for this hub.
JCielo (author) from England on August 28, 2012:
Tara, thanks for visiting and for your question.
The simple sex act by itself can't cause a yeast infection. But frequent sex without a condom can alter vaginal pH which raises the risk of candida. Plus, if the couple aren't scrupulous with cleanliness then this again raises the risk of bacterial infection.
Also if one of the partners is infected then candida can be passed to the other and then when they get infected can be passed back and forth making it very difficult to eliminate it.
Condoms can help but many of them have spermicidal lubricants that can actually increase the candida risk, e.g. Nonoxynol-9, although there are condoms available that don't use this particular spermicide.
Tara McNerney from Washington, DC on August 28, 2012:
Thank you! This is so useful knowing all the home remedies, and very interesting too. Things like garlic and yogurt I've found to heal other medical ills, so I imagine they are very effective on yeast infections too.
Would having a new sexual partner also increase the likelihood of getting a yeast infection? Introduction to new bacteria, etc...?
JCielo (author) from England on August 28, 2012:
Hi Rajan, thanks for stopping by and for taking the time to leave a comment.
Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on August 28, 2012:
Hi John, this is an excellent hub. You have provided a very detailed list of natural treatment to eliminate candida infections.
Voting up, useful and sharing this hub.
JCielo (author) from England on August 27, 2012:
Thanks so much for adding your expertise to the conversation. I really appreciate you taking the time.
Sheila from Surprise Arizona - formerly resided in Washington State on August 27, 2012:
I am not prone to yeast infection but as a nurse I had to read your informative and useful Hub. Many people can benefit from the idea's you have shared. I am glad you included the avoidance of tight pants/panties as that is a big contributing factor especially in the warmer months. Another factor is when a woman begins a sexual relationship with a "new" partner - this is a guaranteed yeast infection for some women. Good Hub
JCielo (author) from England on August 27, 2012:
Thanks for taking the time to read my hub and for leaving a valuable comment.
Sandra Busby from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA on August 27, 2012:
It is my opinion that all women should know how to avoid and treat vaginal yeast rather than using the treatment that traditional medicine uses. Treating systemic yeast is equally important and often not even recognized as a problem. Thanks for writing this informative hub. Voted up and shared.