The vagina always contains small amounts of yeast. When you’re healthy, that yeast (technically, a fungus known as Candida albicans) exists in harmony with your immune system and your other normal vaginal microorganisms. But when something disrupts this balance, the yeast can grow quickly, becoming dense enough to cause the symptoms of a full-blown infection.

This is because vaginal infections caused by bacteria, as well as some sexually transmitted infections (STI), may have symptoms very similar to those caused by yeast, but they require different treatments. Since yeast infection treatments have become available over the counter (OTC), many women simply visit the closest drugstore and buy an antifungal cream.


A Candida skin infection can come from the upper gastrointestinal tract, the lower gastrointestinal tract, or exposure from a care provider. A Candida diaper rash can be accompanied by Candida infection of the mouth (thrush). A breastfeeding infant with a thrush infection may inadvertently infect the mother's nipple/areola area. If such an infection is suspected, simple topical medications may be prescribed by her doctor.
Vagina or discharge smells like onions: What to do While a mild vaginal odor is healthy and all vaginas have a different smell, a strong scent of onions may indicate a problem. In this article, we explore the causes of a vagina that smells like onions. These include specific foods, bacterial vaginosis, and poor hygiene. We also cover treatment and prevention methods. Read now

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Candida organisms naturally live on the skin, but breakdown of the outer layers of skin promote the yeast's overgrowth. This typically occurs when the environment is warm and moist such as in diaper areas and skin folds. Superficial candida skin infections appear as a red flat rash with sharp scalloped edges. There are usually smaller patches of similar appearing rash nearby, known as "satellite lesions." These rashes may cause itching or pain.
Birth control and yeast infections: What's the link? Both hormonal and barrier methods of birth control can increase the risk of a yeast infection. Symptoms include itching, redness, and swelling around the genital area. Over-the-counter antifungal medication may help, but they can also decrease the effectiveness of birth control. Get some tips on how to avoid infection. Read now
In women, yeast infections are the second most common reason for vaginal burning, itching, and discharge. Yeast are found in the vagina of 20% to 50% of healthy women and can overgrow if the environment in the vagina changes. Antibiotic and steroid use is the most common reason for yeast overgrowth. However, pregnancy, menstruation, diabetes, and birth control pills also can contribute to getting a yeast infection. Yeast infections are more common after menopause

Diaper rashes decrease to the extent that diapered skin can have an environment closer to that of undiapered skin. The less time that infants wear diapers, the less the chance that they develop a diaper rash. However, the need to wear diapers must also be considered. Disposable diapers are associated with fewer cases of yeast diaper rash than are cloth diapers. Disposable diapers have absorbent gelling materials that draw moisture away from delicate skin surfaces. Infants who wear breathable disposable diapers developed significantly fewer diaper rashes of any type than infants who wore standard, non-breathable disposable diapers in a series of clinical trials.
A 2005 publication noted that "a large pseudoscientific cult"[69] has developed around the topic of Candida, with claims up to one in three people are affected by yeast-related illness, particularly a condition called "Candidiasis hypersensitivity".[70] Some practitioners of alternative medicine have promoted these purported conditions and sold dietary supplements as supposed cures; a number of them have been prosecuted.[71][72] In 1990, alternative health vendor Nature's Way signed an FTC consent agreement not to misrepresent in advertising any self-diagnostic test concerning yeast conditions or to make any unsubstantiated representation concerning any food or supplement's ability to control yeast conditions, with a fine of $30,000 payable to the National Institutes of Health for research in genuine candidiasis.[72]
The fungus Candida is normally found on and in the body in small amounts. It is present on the skin and in the mouth, as well as in the intestinal tract and genital area. Most of the time, Candida does not cause any symptoms. When these organisms overgrow, they can cause infections (candidiasis), which sometimes can become chronic. If the fungus enters the bloodstream, the infection can spread to other parts of the body. Bloodstream infections are most common in newborns, children with long-term intravenous catheters, and children with weakened immune systems caused by illnesses or medicines.

Some of the medicines used to treat yeast infections are available without a prescription, but you shouldn't just buy one if you think you have a yeast infection. It's important to see a doctor for your diagnosis because if you actually have another type of infection, it could get worse if not properly treated. Also, over-the-counter medicine should not be used by anyone younger than 12 or girls who might be pregnant without talking to a doctor first.
Bacterial vaginosis is an abnormal vaginal condition with signs and symptoms of vaginal discharge, vaginal odor, and vaginal pain. Bacterial vaginosis results from an overgrowth of normal bacteria in the vagina. Although it may cause some disturbing symptoms (discharge and odor), it is not dangerous and cannot be passed by sex. Diagnosis becomes important to exclude serious infections like gonorrhea and Chlamydia. Many treatment options are available such as oral antibiotics and vaginal gels.
If you see a health care professional, he or she may prescribe a single dose of oral fluconazole (Diflucan) or a generic equivalent, although this treatment is not recommended during pregnancy. Also, do not take fluconazole if you are taking cisapride (Propulsid) because this drug combination could cause serious, even fatal, heart problems. There have been reported drug interactions between warfarin, an anticoagulant (blood thinner) medication, and topical miconazole nitrate products (such as Monistat) and oral fluconazole (Diflucan). Additionally, fluconazole may cause liver damage in rare instances, particularly in conjunction with alcohol use. Discuss all the medications you may be taking when you discuss your symptoms with your health care professional.
A vaginal yeast infection is an infection caused by yeast (a type of fungus). Vaginal yeast infection is sometimes referred to as yeast vaginitis, Candidal vaginitis, or Candidal vulvovaginitis. The scientific name for the yeast that causes vaginitis is Candida. Over 90% of vaginal yeast infections are caused by the species known as Candida albicans. Other Candida species make up the remainder of yeast infections.
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