Thrush is an extremely common yeast infection, and as with any common condition there are many treatment options available, both on prescription and over the counter. There are also things you can do to minimise the risk of developing an infection.
Learn about thrush treatments with Dr Hilary Jones
Diflucan is a popular option for those wishing to use a prescription medication to treat their vaginal thrush infection. It comes in tablet form, which means it is very easy to take, unlike other medical treatments which come in the form of pessaries or creams. This antifungal medication contains fluconazole as its active ingredient, which works to relieve symptoms in just 24 hours. A particular benefit of Diflucan is that it only needs to be taken once to cure the infection, unlike other treatments which need to be taken over a number of days.
Gyno-Daktarin is a cream medication for thrush which can be used either as an isolated treatment or alongside Diflucan. It is usually recommended for use by women who suffer from recurrent thrush infections. The cream treatment can help to reduce the discomfort associated with the infection while targeting the fungus that causes it. The Gyno-Daktarin pack contains applicators to help you to insert the cream properly so you are fully equipped to effectively treat the infection.
Some thrush treatments come in the form of intravaginal pessaries. Some women choose this option because they have a low risk of side effects, but a downside of this method is that they are often fairly messy and quite awkward to use. It is possible for pessaries to cause some local irritation, and they are known to cause damage to diaphragms and latex condoms. An example of a pessary is Canesten, which contains clotrimazole as its active ingredient. Canesten is also available in tablet form.
A “natural” treatment for thrush recommended by some is the “yoghurt method”. This involves plain bio-live yoghurt when is inserted into the vagina. It is said that the easiest way to do this is to use a tampon and applicator. Smearing the yoghurt onto the vulva itself is also said to alleviate any irritation or soreness. Though this method is not dangerous in anyway, it is worth noting that no studies have produced any clinical evidence that using live yoghurt in this way will treat thrush effectively.
Many women who experience thrush will experience recurrent infections in their lifetime. However, there are things you can do to reduce the risk of this occurring. It is worth bearing these in mind if you are aware that you are particularly susceptible to yeast infections like vaginal thrush. Avoiding clothing that is particularly tight fitting around the genital area can minimise the risk significantly, and wearing cotton underwear is also recommended. This allows natural ventilation to take place.
It is a good idea to avoid using bath or cleansing products that contain perfumes, as these can act as irritants to the vulval area. Products such as these include vaginal deodorants, scented soaps and vaginal douches. You may find that the irritation is caused by the use of latex condoms, lubricants or spermicidal creams. It may be a good idea to try using non-allergenic condoms, as this may help reduce the risk of recurrent infection. Toilet hygiene is also something to bear in mind, as wiping from back to front after using the toilet can pass anal bacteria through to the urethra and cause infection. You should always wipe from front to back to minimise the risk.