Sex & Dating

Forget TikTok: Here's Your Medically-Backed Guide to Curing Yeast Infections

According to Hey Jane medical expert, Alyssa Wagner.

2,468 Hypes

Forget TikTok: Here's Your Medically-Backed Guide to Curing Yeast Infections

According to Hey Jane medical expert, Alyssa Wagner.

TikTok has become our new search engine, providing tips and tricks for every aspect of our lives. From trending girl talk topics like “How to end a situationship” and “why do I keep getting yeast infections,” it’s expanded far past Google and other mediums that once kept us in the know. Slight problem, though. TikTok has been deemed the home of misinformation, especially in regard to common sexual wellness issues. To curb the age of misinformation, Hey Jane medical expert Alyssa Wagner, discusses the most irritating — pun intended — myths surrounding yeast infections and what to do the next time you have one.

“Yeast infections can be incredibly frustrating, and it’s really hard for people to make an appointment and get to a trusted provider,” Wagner stated in the interview. Add in “work, school and life… it’s not surprising that people are willing to try anything if they think it will help them feel better ASAP.” According to Wagner, this desperation can lead to more harm than good. For example, believing that yeast infections are the same yeast that grow in bread and household treatments shall suffice as cures.

Vaginal Yeast Infection Symptoms Causes Treatment

What is a yeast infection?

“The yeast you’d find in your vagina is very different from the yeast you’d use to make bread. In fact, “yeast” can mean any of the 1,500 species of single-celled fungi that have been identified by scientists,” Wagner urged. “Yeast infections are caused by an overgrowth of a type of fungus called Candida, which is normally present in the body in small amounts. In fact, Candida is one of the most common fungi in the human body, but causes yeast infections when overproduced.”

How common are yeast infections?

“Yeast infections are common: In fact, the CDC estimates that about 75% of people with a vagina will experience at least one yeast infection during their lifetime, and nearly 40-50% have recurrent infections. They are usually easy to treat, and figuring out your triggers is key to dealing with them. With the right provider, you can get relief fast and figure out the root cause—without judgment. I’d recommend coming to us at HeyJane.com for a virtual consultation or head to your local medical care provider.”

Can you have sex with a yeast infection?

“Your personal comfort level is what’s most important here. If sex feels good, then go for it! If it does not or is uncomfortable, then listen to your body because you may want to wait until you feel better to have sex. That’s because,for some people, the friction from sex may prolong symptoms or can cause additional discomfort. When you have an active yeast infection, your vaginal tissues can be irritated and inflamed. Having this irritation can make your tissues more delicate and fragile- which can make them more prone to tears.”

Can a yeast infection delay period symptoms?

“There’s no scientific evidence that a yeast infection can delay your period.”

 

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Are household ingredients like garlic, yogurt and cranberry juice effective for healing yeast infections? If so, how?

“Forget what TikTok says: Please, do not put a garlic clove or a yogurt-soaked tampon into your vagina if you have a yeast infection. Not only will that hurt, but there’s no evidence that it will help with prevention or treatment. In fact, the naturally occurring sugar in dairy products could help fuel the growth of Candida in your vagina. There are other times when you may want to eat yogurt—for example, if you’re taking antibiotics—but a yeast infection isn’t one of them. Some people might reach for cranberry juice when they have a urinary tract infection (which is different from a yeast infection), but unfortunately there’s no research that shows that cranberries can treat a UTI if you already have one. Additionally, lots of cran-juices are chock full of sugar, which can feed inflammatory things in your body. Some studies suggest that cranberries can help prevent UTIs, but the best thing you can drink to help your UTI is water.”

Vaginal Yeast Infection Symptoms Causes Treatment

Are there any effective, at-home yeast infection cures?

“While boric acid is not approved for the treatment of a yeast infection, there is a growing body of research to support that it can help prevent them. The science is still mixed—but it’s a low-risk, over-the-counter option that many people like to try. Just make sure that if you do use boric acid, you use suppositories (i.e. vaginally) as taking boric acid orally is toxic. (You should also wait 24 hours before receiving oral sex, for that very reason.) There are other ways that you can prevent yeast infections, including wearing cotton underwear, skipping panty liners when you’re not on your period, or even staying hydrated.

But once you have a yeast infection the best way to heal it is with a prescribed oral antifungal tablet (called fluconazole, aka Diflucan) or an over-the-counter, short-term course of vaginal cream or suppositories (which work on most—but not all—types of yeast, so it may not be effective enough depending on the strain). Some people will get over the counter vaginal PH test strips to help figure out if what they are experiencing is yeast, which we love because it gives you more information about your body, which you can share with a provider so they can recommend the best treatment for you.”

What do you recommend for treating yeast infections?

“Yeast infections are common: In fact, the CDC estimates that about 75% of people with a vagina will experience at least one yeast infection during their lifetime, and nearly 40-50% have recurrent infections. They are usually easy to treat, and figuring out your triggers is key to dealing with them. With the right provider, you can get relief fast and figure out the root cause—without judgment. I’d recommend coming to us at HeyJane.com for a virtual consultation or head to your local medical care provider.”

This interview has been condensed for clarity.

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