Yeast infections are pretty common, and just as the name suggests, they are caused by the overgrowth of yeast. This condition is also referred to as Candida because the causative fungi is known as Candida albicans. The most common site of the infection is the vagina, but it may also spread to and affect the area below the breasts, in the mouth as well as in places where the skin has numerous folds. Typically, the part of the body affected by the infection tends to be warm and moist as these are the optimal conditions for the overgrowth of the fungi.
Some of the factors that predispose one to a yeast infection include pregnancy, diabetes, the use of antibiotics and/or oral contraceptives as well as certain specific health conditions. In women, menopause may also trigger yeast infections largely due to a dip in the levels of estrogen hormones. Symptoms of a yeast infection include itching at the affected area, a burning sensation when urinating as well as excessive discharge (in cases of a vaginal infection). For ladies, there is also discomfort during sexual intercourse. The good news is that there are a number of home remedies that you can use for the natural treatment of a yeast infection, alongside simple lifestyle changes that you can put in place.
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 4 Cloves of garlic, a pestle and mortar, cotton wool and warm water. Alternatively, use garlic oil and coconut oil.
Garlic is one of the most popular medicinal herbs, largely due to its immense healing properties. As a natural anti fungal, garlic makes for an ideal solution to the treatment of yeast infection. Some of the advantages of garlic include its ease of access, simple preparation and effective healing action.
This remedy is most efficient when applied topically on the affected area. If you cannot get some fresh garlic cloves, you can always use garlic oil instead. As a general guide, carry out a skin patch test first to rule out any potential allergic reactions. Coconut oil is used for the purposes of dilution, as well as because of its healing properties.
Using the fresh Garlic Cloves
- Peel and wash the garlic cloves separately before cutting them into tiny pieces.
- Transfer the chopped garlic to the mortar and crush with the pestle until you get a consistent paste.
- Using the cotton wool, apply the paste on the affected skin and leave on for 15 minutes.
- Rinse the skin using warm water and make sure you repeat this remedy at least twice daily or until the infection clears.
Using the Garlic Oil
- Take a teaspoon of garlic oil and add to the coconut oil.
- Mix the two well before applying on the affected skin using cotton wool.
- Repeat this process twice daily.
2. Probiotic Yogurt:
Time Required: 30 Min (Overnight if you prefer or have extensive yeast infection).
What You Need: Probiotic yogurt, cotton wool and warm water to rinse. Gauze (optional).
Yogurt is yet another popular remedy for the treatment of a yeast infection. This is because it contains a bacteria known as Lactobacillus acidophilus. This bacteria is friendly to the body and helps manage the proliferation of the causative fungi in Candida infections. Easily available and simple to use, this remedy has proven ideal for dealing with yeast infections naturally. For the purposes of this treatment, it is advisable to use plain yogurt (preferably unsweetened for best results).
- Scoop some of the yogurt using the cotton wool and slather a generous amount of it on the affected skin area.
- Let the yogurt sit on the skin for about half an hour. If you prefer, let the yogurt remain on overnight.
- To avoid a messy procedure, simply apply the yogurt then hold in place using gauze.
- When the period elapses, rinse with warm water.
- Use this remedy twice daily for best results.
- NOTE: If it is a vaginal yeast infection, you may want to wash the vaginal area using the yogurt and then rinse.
3. Organic Apple Cider Vinegar:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 3 Tablespoons of raw organic Apple cider vinegar, 1 liter of warm water and cotton wool.
Raw organic Apple Cider Vinegar (abbreviated ACV) is a distinct home remedy for the natural treatment of yeast infections. This is because ACV is rich in anti-fungal properties that make it a handy addition for those who are prone to fungi infections. When applied topically on the affected area, whether in the vaginal region or under the breasts, the ACV kills the yeast, thus reducing the accompanying symptoms of the infection.
NOTE: If you are concerned about an allergic reaction, carry out a skin patch before using this remedy.
- Dilute the ACV by adding it to the water.
- Stir to mix evenly before soaking the cotton wool in the solution.
- Dab the wet cotton wool on the affected area and massage gently.
- Leave the solution on the skin for half an hour before rinsing with warm water.
- Use this remedy twice daily until the infection clears.
4. Coconut Oil:
Time Required: 25 Min
What You Need: Coconut oil and cotton wool. Other additional options include cinnamon oil and tea tree oil.
Coconut oil, as mentioned above, is recommended for treating yeast infection as it has potent anti-fungal properties that help deal with the yeast infection. Coconut oil is both affordable and effective, so if you have a history of frequent fungal infections, you may want to add this to your cabinet. Cinnamon oil may be added to compliment the coconut oil’s anti-fungal properties.
Tea tree oil also makes for a great option as it is a strong anti-fungal and makes for a powerful combination when used alongside coconut oil. there are two ways you can use this remedy: the first is through topical oil application and the second is through a mouth rinse (in the case of oral yeast infection) as discussed below.
- Mix equal amounts of the coconut oil and the cinnamon oil.
- Use the cotton wool to apply the mixture on the affected skin to manage the spread of the infection and provide you relief from the symptoms.
Swishing of Coconut Oil in the case or Oral Infections
- Add a few drops of tea tree oil to the coconut oil and mix well.
- Swish the oil in your mouth for 15 minutes, in two rounds if you prefer.
- After the 5 minutes, spit the mixture – do not swallow it as it could cause toxicity and further aggravate the infection.
- Repeat the swishing a second time and spit. Use this remedy thrice daily for quick clearance of the infection.
5. Tea Tree Oil:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1 Tablespoon of tea tree oil, 1 teaspoon of olive oil (may be replaced by sweet almond oil) and cotton wool.
Tea tree oil is used to treat yeast infections because it is a potent anti-fungal. As with most of the remedies aforementioned, this oil is recommended for topical application and MUST NOT be used internally to avoid toxicity. Note too, that tea tree oil is not recommended for use in expectant women as it could cause harm to the unborn baby. For this remedy, the addition of olive oil or sweet almond oil is for the purposes of dilution as well as to provide a carrier oil.
- Add the tea tree oil to your choice carrier oil and mix well.
- Dip the cotton wool in the resulting oil mixture and rub it on the affected skin.
- Do this severally daily until you notice that the infection has cleared.
6. Extract From Olive Leaf:
Time Required: 4 Weeks for the extraction process and 30 Min for topical application
What You Need: Fresh olive leaves, mason jar with lid, clean glass jar, vodka, strainer and cotton wool.
This remedy requires you to actually prepare the olive leaf extract using the aforementioned ingredients. The process of extraction takes 4 weeks, so it may be practical to use any of the remedies included above as you await the total extraction of the constituent ingredients of olive leaf. The solvent used for this process is vodka.
The resulting extract is both anti-fungal and antioxidant in nature, and this is what makes it an ideal remedy for the treatment of yeast infections. The other advantage of using olive leaf extract is that it has the capacity to create a sound environment for good bacteria to flourish. Go ahead and savor the benefits of this easy-to-make home remedy.
- Chop the fresh olive leaves into small pieces. The smaller the leaves, the greater the surface area of extraction, which is what you need for a potent extract.
- Place the chopped leaves in the mason jar and add vodka until the leaves are covered in entirety.
- Cover the jar using the lid and place in a cool dark place. The latter is key to prevent oxidation reactions which may prevent optimal extraction.
- Let the jar remain undisturbed for 4 weeks.
- Once the time elapses, pass the mixture through a strainer and collect the extract in a clean glass jar.
- Dip the cotton wool in a portion of the olive leaf extract and use it to apply on the infected skin.
- Massage gently to ensure best results.
- Use this extract thrice daily until you are sure the infection has cleared.
7. Oregano Oil:
Time Required: 15 Min
What You Need: Oregano oil and choice carrier oil (olive or jojoba oil).
One of the natural home remedies that you should be on the look out for when suffering from a yeast infection is oregano oil. The oil boasts powerful anti-fungal properties which are essential in managing an overgrowth of yeast. Another benefit of using this oil is that it plays a key role in strengthening your immune system. This simple remedy is one that you should try out.
- Add the oregano oil to your choice carrier oil and mix well.
- Place a few drops of the oil mixture on cotton wool and apply on the affected skin.
- Use this remedy at least twice daily to facilitate for quick healing.
8. Boric Acid:
Time Required: 15 Min
What You Need: 1 Tablespoon of boric acid, warm water and a soft towel.
Boric acid is a chemical compound that is readily available at your health store, and which you can use to treat yeast infections. This is because it has great anti-fungal properties that help get rid of the increased fungi population. Warm water is used for dilution purposes so that the boric acid is both gentle and effective. Note that this remedy is not recommended for expectant women.
- Place the boric acid in a cup and pour the warm water in.
- Stir to ensure complete dilution.
- Soak the cotton wool in the boric acid solution and apply it on the affected skin.
- Allow the solution to remain on the skin for about 10 minutes and then rinse with warm water.
- Use this remedy twice daily for up to 1 week or until the infection clears.
9. Calendula Herb Leaves:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 3 Calendula leaves, pestle and mortar and warm water.
Calendula herb’s leaves are ideal for the treatment of yeast infection, thanks to its anti-fungal properties. This remedy is one that you can prepare with ease and get relief from the condition’s symptoms.
- Clean the calendula leaves well before cutting into small pieces.
- Crush the leaves as gently as you can using the pestle and mortar.
- Apply the crushed leaves on the affected area and use this remedy twice daily.
Organic cranberries are also effective in the treatment of yeast infections, and have the advantage of clearing bladder infections. In addition to the remedies listed above, it helps to wear loose clothing to avoid warm moist areas where the fungi thrive. For women, it is key to use gentle feminine and personal products. These products ensure that the vaginal pH is optimal, which in turn keeps the growth of fungi in check. If the infection does not clear after a considerable period of time, you are advised to seek medical attention to rule out any underlying conditions.