A yeast infection occurs when a type of yeast that’s normally present in the vagina (Candida yeast) overgrows. It is a very common infection that causes uncomfortable symptoms. Three out of four women have had at least one yeast infection.
At Dignity Health North State, our gynecologists are experts at treating infections, including yeast infections, in Northern California. Find a Doctor at one of our locations who will give you the personalized care and treatment you deserve.
Yeast Infection Symptoms
Signs yeast infection include:
- A burning sensation, especially when urinating or having intercourse
- A thick whitish or watery vaginal discharge
- Genital itching and irritation
- Vaginal pain and soreness
- Swollen, reddened vulva
What Causes Yeast Infections?
Yeast infection can be triggered by:
- Weakened immune system. Medical treatments and diseases that lower immunity — such as corticosteroids and HIV — increase the risk of yeast infection.
- Antibiotic use. Antibiotics kill “good” bacteria that helps keep yeast under control. If you need long-term antibiotic treatment, ask your doctor about strategies to decrease your risk of yeast infection.
- Pregnancy. Women are more likely to get yeast infections during pregnancy.
- Diabetes. Women with uncontrolled diabetes have more sugar in their bloodstream. Sugar is the main source of energy for yeast. If you have frequent yeast infections, your doctor may want to test you for diabetes.
- Hormone use. Yeast grow in a high-estrogen environment. Taking birth control pills and hormone supplements can increase your risk of yeast infection. Natural hormonal swings during menopause and puberty can also raise your risk.
You can help prevent yeast infection by:
- Avoiding or minimizing antibiotic use
- Changing out of wet clothing as soon as possible
- Avoiding tight-fitting pants and undergarments
- Wearing cotton underwear
Yeast Infection Treatment at Dignity Health North State
If you think you have a yeast infection, see your doctor. Many infections of the vagina have similar symptoms. The right diagnosis will help your doctor determine the most effective treatment.
Treatment options for yeast infection include:
- Over-the-counter suppositories and creams. Ask your doctor which over-the-counter treatment is right for you and use it as directed. These treatments are available in single dose, three- and five-day options, and week-long regimes.
- Prescription suppositories or creams. Sometimes prescription options are cheaper than over-the-counter treatments.
- Prescription oral medications. Your doctor may recommend a single pill to treat yeast infection. If you have recurring yeast infections, you may need multiple doses over days or weeks.
With the right treatment, most yeast infections go away in a few days. Tell your doctor which treatments work best for you.
Dignity Health North State offers personalized treatment for yeast infection in Mt. Shasta, Red Bluff, and Redding, CA.