A vaginal yeast infection is usually caused by a fungus called Candida albicans. When a man and a woman have sexual intercourse or touch each other in areas where the infection is present, the fungus may be shared and spread between body parts. Some individuals are more susceptible to the infection than others.
Prevention is the first key component to avoidance of spreading a yeast infection. If you find you have a yeast infection or suspect that your sexual partner suffers from an infection, it’s important to avoid having sexual intercourse with that individual (or anyone else) until you are sure that you and anyone else have successfully treated the infection. In situations where one sexual partner is found to have an infection, it is important that both partners go through the treatment, even if one individual is not showing the signs of infection.
Yogurt is the number one Candida fighter. Some experts believe that eating just 4 ounces of plain yogurt a day (choose either Activia or Stonybrook Farms or something similar) will help not only cure a yeast infection, but also keep recurring yeast infections from coming back. Some people prefer to apply plain yogurt directly to the infected area at night before going to bed for seven to ten days or until the infection is gone. The yogurt can be eaten on a daily basis as well to help fight the infection from the inside out. To apply yogurt directly to the area, allow to warm to room temperature. Either apply the yogurt directly to the area with your hand or finger or use some sort of applicator. Wash hands immediately after applying to avoid spreading the infection.
Garlic is also a natural infection fighter. Eat garlic (fresh garlic is best) on a daily basis to help ward off infection or wrap a peeled garlic toe in a piece of cheese cloth and insert into the vagina before bed. Remove in the morning and rinse off. Keep in mind that some individuals experience the taste of garlic in their mouth even if it has been applied to the vaginal area.
Apple cider vinegar is also beneficial in fighting a yeast infection. Pour two cups of organic apple cider vinegar into hot bath water along with 2 cups of sea salt. Soak in the tub for 10 to 15 minutes 1 to 2 times per day. Add 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to 8 ounces of fresh water and drink throughout the day to help clear out the infection from the inside out.
Sometimes home remedies for yeast infections take longer to work than store-bought remedies. It’s important to keep the area clean and to avoid using strong soaps in areas that are prone to infections. Seven to ten days is a good estimate for how long it will take for a home remedy to completely get rid of the infection.