Vaginal Yeast Infection: Care Instructions

Your Care Instructions

A vaginal yeast infection is caused by too many yeast cells in the vagina. This is common in women of all ages. Itching, vaginal discharge and irritation, and other symptoms can bother you. But yeast infections don’t often cause other health problems.

Some medicines can increase your risk of getting a vaginal yeast infection. These include antibiotics, birth control pills, hormones, and steroids. You may also be more likely to get a yeast infection if you are pregnant, have diabetes, douche, or wear tight clothes.

With treatment, most vaginal yeast infections get better in 2 to 3 days.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all ¬†appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It’s also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

How can you care for yourself at home when you have a vaginal yeast infection?

  • Take your medicines exactly as prescribed. Call your doctor if you think you are having a problem with your medicine.
  • Ask your doctor about over-the-counter (OTC) medicines for yeast infections. They may cost less than prescription medicines. If you use an OTC treatment, read and follow all instructions on the label.
  • Do not use tampons while using a vaginal cream or suppository. The tampons can absorb the medicine. Use pads instead.
  • Wear loose cotton clothing. Do not wear nylon or other fabric that holds body heat and moisture close to the skin.
  • Try sleeping without underwear.
  • Do not scratch. Relieve itching with a cold pack or a cool bath.
  • Do not wash your vaginal area more than once a day. Use plain water or a mild, unscented soap. Air-dry the vaginal area.
  • Change out of wet swimsuits after swimming.
  • Do not have sex until you have finished your treatment.
  • Do not douche.

When should you call for help?

Call your doctor now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You have unexpected vaginal bleeding.
  • You have new or increased pain in your vagina or pelvis.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:

  • You have a fever.
  • You are not getting better after 2 days.
  • Your symptoms come back after you finish your medicines.