Certain factors may increase your chance of developing a yeast infection. These factors don't actually cause the problem, but they may create a situation that allows the yeast to grow rapidly.
- Clothing: Tight jeans, nylon underwear, pantyhose, and wet bathing suits can hold in heat and moisture (two conditions in which yeast organisms thrive). Looser pants or skirts, 100% cotton underwear, and stockings may help avoid this problem.
- Diet: Cutting down on sweets, milk products, and artificial sweeteners may reduce the risk of yeast infections.
- Antibiotics: Antibiotics work by eliminating disease-causing organisms. While they are helpful in curing other problems, antibiotics may lead to an overgrowth of Candida in the vagina.
- Pregnancy: Hormonal changes in the body during pregnancy encourage the growth of yeast. This is a very common time for an infection to occur. Until the baby is born, it may be hard to completely eliminate yeast infections. If you believe you are pregnant, tell your doctor.
- Menstruation: Sometimes monthly changes in hormone levels may lead to yeast infections.
- Diabetes: In addition to heat and moisture, yeast thrives on sugar. Because diabetics often have sugar in their urine, their vaginas are rich in this substance. Careful control of diabetes may help prevent yeast infection.
Controlling these factors can help eliminate yeast infections and may prevent them from coming back.
Some other helpful tips:
- For best results, be sure to use the medication as prescribed by your doctor, even if you feel better quickly.
- Avoid sexual intercourse, if your doctor advises you to do so. The suppository formulation (not the cream) may damage the diaphragm. Therefore, use of the diaphragm during therapy with the suppository is not recommended. Consult your physician.
- If your partner has any penile itching, redness, or discomfort, he should consult his physician and mention that you are being treated for a yeast infection.
- You can use the medication even if you are having your menstrual period. However, you should not use tampons because they may absorb the medication. Instead, use external pads or napkins until you have finished your medication. You may also wish to wear a sanitary napkin if the vaginal medication leaks.
- Dry the genital area thoroughly after showering, bathing, or swimming. Change out of a wet bathing suit or damp exercise clothes as soon as possible. A dry environment is less likely to encourage the growth of yeast.
- Wipe from front to rear (away from the vagina) after a bowel movement.
- Don't douche unless your doctor specifically tells you to do so. Douching may disturb the vaginal balance.
- Don't scratch if you can help it. Scratching can cause more irritation and spread the infection.
- Discuss with your physician any medication you are already taking. Certain types of medication can make your vagina more susceptible to infection.
- Eat nutritious meals to promote your general health.
This answer should not be considered medical advice...This answer should not be considered medical advice and should not take the place of a doctor’s visit. Please see the bottom of the page for more information or visit our Terms and Conditions.
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