Reviewed by Lisa Blohm, PhD, MSN, RN
In this article:
No one wants to get a yeast infection. And we mean NO ONE. Those tricky, obnoxious symptoms and the often lengthy recovery time make yeast infections right at the top of the most inconvenient (and most common) health issues to struggle with.
But you can help your body avoid getting a yeast infection and help your body heal fast — here’s how to get rid of a yeast infection in as little as 24 hours! Learn what causes a yeast infection, how to treat a yeast infection, and how to prevent a yeast infection in the future.
What Is Yeast?
Yeast is a living fungus found in plant leaves, flowers, fruit, soil — and people. In fact, your body is filled with yeast, called Candida, that live in your skin, mouth, digestive system, urinary tract, and more.
Too much or too little yeast in your body can lead to infection and other health issues. That’s why it’s essential to make sure your body is in balance.
But, what exactly is yeast?
Yeast is a living, breathing organism. It’s a fungus that’s found in plant leaves, flowers, fruit, soil — and people. In fact, your body is filled with yeast, called Candida, from the inside out! It lives on your skin, in your mouth, in your digestive tract, in your vagina, and more.
The yeast in your body plays a key role in your digestive health, your vaginal health, and your immune system strength. This is why it’s essential to make sure your body is in balance. Too much or too little yeast in your body can lead to infection and other health issues.
Life in the flora
But yeast isn’t the only thing living in and on your body. There’s a whole colony of organisms that includes yeast, fungus, bacteria, and more! This community of living smaller-than-the-eye-can-see organisms is called ‘flora’ or ‘microflora’. Most often, you’ll hear about ‘gut flora’ or ‘skin flora’. But any area of your body with a colony of living organisms is a flora.
Healthy flora is like a friendly apartment building. Your neighbors don’t play their music too loudly, they’re happy to lend you a cup of sugar when you need one, and they’ll hold the door open for you when your hands are full of packages. Everyone in the building’s living in happy harmony!
Unhealthy flora, on the other hand, are like that apartment building with unfortunate neighbors. The guy in 2B left his garbage bag in the hallway again. He’s throwing parties that keep you up all night. He props the door open whenever he forgets his keys — letting any ol’ passerby inside.
If all’s well, you likely won’t think twice about your flora. But if there’s a problem, it becomes glaringly obvious, and problematic, fast! Often this happens in the form of yeast overgrowth.
Types of yeast infections
Of course, there are plenty of reasons you may have an issue with your intestinal flora — but one of the most common causes for concern is a yeast infection. Because there are many different florae, there are also many different types of bacteria, yeast, and fungal infections.
Oral thrush, for example, is a yeast infection in your mouth. Cutaneous candidiasis is a yeast infection on your skin and nails. Unfortunately for your little one, certain diaper rashes are also caused by a yeast infection. And let’s not forget about penile yeast infection. (Yes, men get yeast infections, too.) But of course, the most common is the vaginal yeast infection.
And let’s not forget about penile yeast infection. (Yes, men get yeast infections, too.) But of course, the most common is the vaginal yeast infection.
What is a yeast infection?
When you’re healthy and have a “normal” bacterial balance, Candida yeast live peacefully in your body. No muss, no fuss, no problems!
Sometimes, though, certain factors cause Candida to multiply too rapidly and this leads to infection. The wetter and warmer the climate, the quicker the fungi multiply and spiral into an infection. The vagina is the perfect place for Candida to thrive!
What causes yeast infections in women?
While a yeast infection can occur just about anywhere in the body, your vagina is often a hotbed for bad fungus, bacteria, and yeast. Yeast infections can develop easily in the vagina, and symptoms can worsen quickly.
That’s because it doesn’t take much to throw off the chemical balance in your vagina. Even a small imbalance can lead to an overgrowth of yeast and, in turn, an infection. Some things that can affect your vagina’s balance and cause a yeast infection in women include:
- Changes to hormone levels. Your hormones can shift the balance in your vagina and lead to infection. During PMS, menopause, pregnancy, and breastfeeding, hormone levels vary and can affect your vagina’s health. Curamed + Dim, Estromend, PM Phytogen are all excellent choices for balancing out-of-control hormones for women.
- Taking antibiotics. Antibiotics kill both “good” bacteria and “bad” bacteria. This means that after taking antibiotics, you’re susceptible to a bacterial imbalance — and a yeast infection. If you’ve taken antibiotics at any point, we strongly recommend taking probiotics (like this one or this one!) to help your body reestablish good bacteria and yeast balance.
- Diabetes, especially uncontrolled or undiagnosed diabetes, can cause yeast overgrowth. High levels of sugar in the body feeds the yeast in your vagina. If you’re diabetic, you should check out this natural glucose support supplement — it’s one of the most effective products we carry!
- A weakened immune system, or immune system disorders. If your immune system is out of whack, it can promote yeast growth. Elderberry supplements (like our all-time favorite) and other immune-boosting supplements are designed to strengthen and fortify your immune system. They’re a great choice to help your body naturally get rid of yeast infections.
- Products like douches or vaginal sprays can strip your vagina of healthy bacteria and lead to infection. Avoid doing this unless specifically advised to by your doctor.
- Your diet also plays a role in your vaginal health. Diets high in sugar or fermented foods can cause a yeast infection. Eliminating sugar is always at the top of the list — yeast feeds off of sugars!
Can men get yeast infections?
Yep, they sure can! Anyone with yeast in or on their body (which is all of us) can get a yeast infection. This includes men, kids, and even our pets! Men most often develop a yeast infection in the scrotum or penis.
What causes yeast infections in men?
Yeast infections in men have very different causes than yeast infections in women.
Causes for yeast infections in men include:
- Unprotected sexual intercourse with a woman who has a vaginal yeast infection. That’s right, you can get a yeast infection from your partner, so exercise caution when getting intimate.
- Poor hygiene can make you vulnerable to infection as you’re not properly caring for your private parts. Take showers or baths frequently.
- Being uncircumcised can increase the likelihood you’ll develop an infection. The foreskin is a happy home for harmful bacteria and fungi that can lead to infection. If you practice good hygiene, however, this won’t be an issue.
- Taking antibiotics has the same effect on men, as they do on women. They kill good and bad bacteria and can leave your body out of balance.
- Diabetes, too, can lead to a yeast infection in men.
- And diet is just as important for a yeast infection. Avoid high-carb, high-sugar foods that can cause a yeast infection.
What are the symptoms of a yeast infection?
Yeast infections come with uncomfortable, unpleasant, and unwelcome symptoms. Here’s what both men and women may experience with a yeast infection:
- Discharge. For women, it’s typically thick, white, and looks like cottage cheese. Unpleasant, indeed. For men, the discharge also may resemble cottage cheese and has a foul odor. Have you lost your appetite yet?
- Itching, burning, and irritation. In men, this typically occurs between the penis and the foreskin. In women, it occurs most often in the vulva, but any area of your vagina and surrounding tissue is subject to that burning itch-itch-itch.
- Painful intercourse or a burning sensation during sex.
Yeast infection symptoms in women
- A burning sensation while peeing or during intercourse. The severity depends on the severity of your infection!
- Vaginal pain and soreness range the spectrum from mildly uncomfortable to excruciating.
- Sores or fissures on the skin that can get additionally infected.
- Swelling in the vagina.
- Bleeding and/or a raw rash.
Yeast infection symptoms in men
- Redness and rashes, or rash-like bumps in the infected area. These bumps are called papules and may also be filled with pus. Ouch!
- Difficulty getting an erection.
- Trouble pulling back your foreskin.
- Foul smell, particularly around the foreskin.
UTI vs yeast infection — Are they different?
Many symptoms are similar between UTIs and yeast infections. They’re both infections that occur “down there” and might be to blame if you feel a burning sensation when you pee — yet they’re very different!
Many folks commonly confuse a UTI with a yeast infection and vice versa. Here’s what you need to know.
UTIs occur when “bad” bacteria enter your urinary system. UTIs can affect you anywhere along your urinary tract, from your urethra all the way up to your bladder, ureters, and kidneys. You’ll likely feel a burning sensation when you pee and will feel the need to “go” much more frequently than normal. Your urine may appear cloudy and have a strong odor.
Yeast infections in women don’t typically result in pee or discharge that has much (if any) an odor, which can be a helpful distinguishing symptom between a UTI and a yeast infection.
Here are some common causes of UTIs:
- Contact with stool. Your poo contains all kinds of “bad” bacteria — including E.coli. When you don’t practice good bathroom hygiene (or love wearing thongs), bacteria from your stool can enter your urinary system.
- Having sex. During intercourse, there’s a lot going on down there. Bacteria can be introduced to the vagina and urethra by the penis. It’s recommended that women urinate promptly after having sex to help flush out any bacteria from the urethra.
- Not peeing enough! If you’re prone to “hold it” as long as you can, think again. Not urinating frequently enough can cause UTIs.
- Exposure to STIs (sexually transmitted infection). In addition to potentially causing you to develop a STD, a sexually transmitted infection can also introduce harmful bacteria to the urinary tract, causing a UTI.
- Bath bombs and hot tubs. Not so relaxing, huh? Hot tubs are often a hotbed of bacteria if proper cleaning procedures aren’t followed. Additionally, bath bombs or bubble bath may cause inflammation of the urethra and increase the risk of obtaining a UTI.
Here’s some additional info you may find helpful:
- Both men and women can get UTIs, but women are more likely to develop a UTI simply because of their anatomy.
- You can have a UTI and a yeast infection at the same time. If this is your situation, you have our deepest sympathies. We’d suggest you see your doctor for some help finding rapid relief.
- You don’t need to be sexually active to experience a UTI.
Doctors most often treat UTIs with antibiotics. That’s not a bad thing, especially when you have a UTI that is causing significant discomfort. But, before you do turn to a synthetic solution, try a natural remedy instead. UTI BFF is an excellent option that helps your body naturally eliminate the “bad” bacteria and stay in balance. Its nourishing ingredients help cultivate an environment where the bad bacteria is less likely to survive, helping to decrease the risk of a UTI recurrence — even if you are prone to them. Add a good probiotic like this one, and you can simultaneously protect against yeast infections.
How long does a yeast infection last?
Yeast infections vary in both severity and the amount of time it takes to beat them. Some yeast infections subside on their own with no intervention. On average, a yeast infection usually will clear up after a few days with natural supplements and home remedies.
Severe or stubborn yeast infections could require doctor intervention and medication and can last much longer. However, there’s a lot you can do to help ease your symptoms and get rid of your yeast infection fast.
What’s the fastest way to get rid of a yeast infection?
The urge to itch at an inopportune moment no doubt has you in a hurry to banish your symptoms and get rid of your yeast infection. The good news is, there are many things you can do to help!
Supplement with a yeast-blasting dietary AID
Re-balance your yeast levels with a dietary supplement like Candidase Extra Strength +add to cart. This high-potency formula is designed to support healthy yeast levels by lowering Candida overgrowth and balancing bacteria in your GI tract, urinary tract, and vagina. It’s packed with fungus-busting probiotics and the added support your vagina needs to beat a yeast infection!
But Candidase is most effective when it’s paired with a rapid cleanse system. We recommend Renew Life CandiSmart +add to cart, a targeted yeast cleansing formula. It’s a 15-day, 2-part targeted yeast cleansing formula designed to banish excess yeast, alleviate symptoms, and help your body naturally rebalance your flora.
Bonus: it helps prevent recurrent yeast infections and nourishes your other flora, too. From your gut to your intestines, your vagina to your urinary tract, and every microcolony in between, this program will help you get rid of your yeast infection, fast!
By combining these two supplements, you just discovered how to get rid of yeast infections in 24 hours. At least the common mild-to-moderate yeast infections. While this method is excellent for most, any signs of a severe yeast infection will warrant a chat with your doctor.
Home remedies for yeast infections
In addition to taking a bacteria-blasting supplement, there are additional at-home remedies that can help you get rid of your yeast infection.
Probiotic supplementation targets bacterial balance in your whole body — so it makes sense that they can help with a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis! Choose one targeted for females, like MegaFood MegaFlora Women’s Probiotic, so you know it’ll promote vaginal and urinary tract health.
Boric acid may sound boring, but it’s an ingredient that has some serious anti-fungal properties. There are many boric acid suppositories available for purchase that can help naturally relieve symptoms.
Tea tree oil is another great fungus-fighting compound. Tea tree essential oils are very potent and the vagina is a very delicate area. While there’s some debate about the best way to take tea tree oil to help get rid of your yeast infection, it’s vital to properly dilute tea tree oil in a carrier oil before use. The best bet is to find a tea tree oil suppository from a reputable brand.
Greek Yogurt: Because greek yogurt is full of healthy bacteria, it can help rebalance vaginal bacteria and alleviate some yeast infection symptoms. Simply scoop some plain greek yogurt onto your fingers and massage into the skin around and just inside your vagina. Make sure the yogurt contains Lactobacillus and is free from sweeteners or other additives! It might seem a little strange, but the cool yogurt can also help with itching and irritation, as well!
Baking soda and water is a gentle option that can help rebalance the pH of your vagina and get rid of yeast infections. Mix one teaspoon in a half cup or so of warm water. Pour it gently into your vagina or douche. Alternatively, take a hot bath with two cups of baking soda added to the water. Coconut Oil is full of antioxidants and also has antifungal properties. This makes it a great home remedy for a yeast infection. Simply spread some 100% organic coconut oil onto your fingers and insert into the vagina. Or, try applying organic coconut oil to a clean tampon before inserting it.
What if my yeast infection won’t go away?
It’s important to pay attention to your body and your symptoms! If you have a severe yeast infection, seek medical attention promptly. If your symptoms are extremely uncomfortable or they haven’t improved in the last 36 hours, get to your doctor, girl (or brother)!
9 ways to prevent a yeast infection
Unfortunately, recurrent yeast infections are a reality for many. 3 out of every 4 women have a yeast infection at least once in their life, and many of those women will develop recurrent yeast infections. But there are some things you can do to prevent future yeast infections.
- Avoid extremely tight-fitting pants or panties.
- Avoid douching, which removes all the bacteria from your vagina — the good and the bad.
- Avoid scented feminine products, bath products, toilet paper, or personal hygiene products.
- Change pads or tampons frequently.
- Avoid unnecessary antibiotics. When you do need antibiotics, take probiotics during the entire antibiotic cycle and for several weeks after to avoid bacterial imbalance.
- Avoid wet or damp clothes. Change out of sweaty gym clothes stat. And try not to hang out in a soggy bikini at the beach!
- Avoid synthetic panties. Instead, choose organic cotton, bamboo, linen, or other forms of natural fibers. These are far more breathable and much better for your lady bits — and man parts too!
- Promote personal hygiene for your sexual partner! A dirty penis (or anything else that goes in your vagina, for that matter) can introduce harmful bacteria and make you more susceptible to an infection. The reverse is also true — women need to practice healthy personal hygiene as well.
- Wipe from front to back. This helps prevent the spread of bacteria or yeast from the anus to your vagina.
- Avoid eating lots of sugars, yeast-heavy, or processed foods. These foods are hard on the natural flora of your body and can contribute to yeast overgrowth.
How to get your groove back—and your bacteria balanced—after a yeast infection
You’re symptom-free after a yeast infection—now what? After your infection’s cleared up, it’s essential to treat your vagina kindly and rebalance that flora! This is especially true if you took anti-fungal medications to get rid of your yeast infection.
To build back healthy bacteria — and yes, even yeast! — try taking a pre and probiotic supplement. Probiotic nutrients provide health benefits that will help your flora thrive and grow into a healthy microcolony again.
Try a supplement like Flora Basilica +add to cart. It is designed to support not only healthy bacteria in your vagina but in your gut, intestines, and whole body, too. From 25-150 billion probiotics, each potent formula is packed with protein strains to help replenish everything that was “off” during your infection.
If you still have questions, get in contact with our certified Wellness Consultants! They’re knowledgeable about all things yeast-infection and are happy to help. Reach out to us via LiveChat.