Yeast Infection/Thrush (Candidiasis)

OTHER NAMES

Candida, vaginal yeast infection, vulvovaginal candiasis (VVC)

ORGANISM

Fungus: Candida albicans

TRANSMISSION

Yeast infections are not sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but it is possible to pass yeast infections to your partner during sex. You don't have to be sexually active to get a vaginal yeast infection. Your vagina may have small amounts of yeast at any given time without causing any symptoms. But when too much yeast grows, you can get an infection.

TYPICAL SYMPTOMS

Symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection include itching and burning in and around the vagina, pain when urinating or during sex, and a thick, white vaginal discharge that looks like cottage cheese. It may be mild or severe.

DIAGNOSIS

A yeast infection is diagnosed by examining the area in and around the vagina and testing a sample of vaginal discharge.

TREATMENT

Yeast infections can be treated with anti-fungal prescription pills and non-prescription vaginal creams or suppositories.

PREVENTION

Avoid douching because it can disrupt the natural balance of organisms in the vagina.

Remove wet bathing suits immediately. Use cotton underwear. Keep vaginal area clean. Always wipe from front to back after using the bathroom.

DANGER

Yeast infection symptoms are similar to other vaginal infections and STIs.  If you have a more serious infection, and not a yeast infection, it can lead to major health problems. Seeing your doctor or nurse is the only way to know for sure if you have a yeast infection.

COMMENTS

If your partner has symptoms of a yeast infection, they should be tested and treated.

Your risk for yeast infections is higher if you are pregnant, high blood sugar, birth control with higher doses of estrogen, douche or use vaginal sprays, recently took antibiotics or steroids or have a weakened immune system, such as from HIV.

DSHS Publication Number 13-11919