Candida refers to a type of fungus commonly found in the mouth, skin, vagina, and digestive tract [1].

It usually does not cause any problem unless it increases in a number that can no longer be controlled by the immune system [2].

Yeast infections come in several forms: oral thrush (mouth), candida esophagitis (esophagus), vulvovaginal candiasis (vagina), skin rashes, and yeast infection of the bloodstream [2].

Of all the types, vaginal yeast infection is the most common while yeast infection of the bloodstream is the most serious and dangerous [2].

Get yeast infections under control using these proven safe and effective home remedies.

Natural Remedies for Yeast Infections

1. Coconut Oil

Coconut tree provides numerous nutritional and medicinal purposes, making it highly useful in the prevention and treatment of diseases [3].

Its water and kernel are packed with nutrients and minerals, and work as an antiparasitic, antioxidant and hypoglycemic [3].

Oil extracted from its fruit, meanwhile, has been found to have antiviral, antiprotozoal and antimicrobial properties [4].

Several studies confirm that it can treat a yeast infection by inhibiting the activities of Candida albicans, even those that have grown resistant to antibiotics [5, 6].

In 2010, researchers from Nigeria used the fusion method to test the efficacy of a formulation made from 40 percent oil against several strains of yeasts [5].

Positive results were obtained after coconut oil successfully inhibit the yeast’s growth and spread [5].

In another study, coconut oil’s antimicrobial effects were evaluated against 52 strains of Candida [6].

It was found that Cancida albicans were most susceptible to the fungicidal powers of coconut oil, depleting them at 100 percent [6].

It was concluded that this natural remedy worked even more efficiently than fluconazole, a commonly prescribed antifungal medication [6].

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 teaspoons of coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Combine the two oils.
  • Apply to the affected areas of the skin once or twice a day.
  • For those with oral thrush, gargle the oil mixture
  • Do this for 10 minutes, three times a day but do not swallow.

Related: 9 Coconut Oil Remedies for Vaginal, Skin, and Oral Yeast Infections

2. Vinegar

Wearing dentures makes you more prone to oral thrush, especially if the dentures don’t fit well, you keep it on at night, or you’re not able to keep it clean [7].

It’s a good thing there’s a quick and simple way to put an end to this problem, and it’s by using vinegar.

Studies have shown that vinegar is an effective solution for yeast infection among denture wearers, reducing the number of Candida species inside the mouth [8, 9, 10].

A study that was featured in the Journal of Applied Oral Science reports that out of the 55 patients with oral candida infection, those that soaked their dentures in 10 percent vinegar overnight for 45 days had a significant reduction in the number of microbes in their saliva [8].

Vinegar was not able to completely eradicate all the strains of fungi inside the mouth but it did lower the count and prevented worsening of the infection [8].

This remedy also worked by preventing yeast from adhering to the oral cavities [9].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup of warm water
  • 1 tablespoon of vinegar

Recommended Directions:

  • In a bowl, mix vinegar and water.
  • Put dentures in the solution.
  • Let it soak overnight.
  • Rinse with water the next day before wearing.

3. Yogurt

As it turns out, yogurt is more than just a delicious snack that we all love.

It’s another potent treatment for yeast infection that you should definitely try.

A study that can be found in the Clinical & Experimental Immunology Journal reports that Lactobacillus acidophilus in yogurt has powerful antifungal effects against microorganisms that cause oral thrush [11].

This was the conclusion derived from a study that fed Lactobacillus acidophilus to mice with oral infections [11].

Not only was there a dramatic reduction in yeast species, inflammation and other unpleasant symptoms were also alleviated [11].

Other studies meanwhile point out that it’s an excellent solution for yeast infections in the vagina [12, 13, 14].

In a study performed in New York, 33 female patients with recurrent vaginal candida infections received a treatment of either yogurt-based or yogurt-free diet for one year [13].

Of the 13 patients who completed the trial, those who consumed yogurt-based diet were completely cured of the infection [13].

Researchers recommend consumption of eight ounces of yogurt every day to reduce both the colonization and infection of Candida species [13].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of plain yogurt
  • 1 to 2 cups of plain yogurt

Recommended Directions:

  • Apply one teaspoon of plain yogurt to the affected area.
  • Let it sit for 30 minutes before rinsing.
  • Repeat procedure two to three times a week.
  • Eat one to two cups of yogurt a day.

4. Oregano Oil

There’s more to oregano than making your dishes more aromatic and delicious.

Its oil extract plays an important role in traditional medicine in many parts of the world.

It is said to have a “broad spectrum of in vitro antimicrobial activities” thanks to its active compounds thymol and carvacrol [15].

It’s one of the many essential oils that have been discovered to have significant inhibitory effects on fungal species that cause yeast infection [15, 16, 17].

American researchers report that oregano oil can prevent the growth of Candida species by up to 75 percent [15].

Daily intake of 8.6 mg of oregano oil diluted in 100 microliters of olive oil for 30 days resulted in 80 percent survival among mice subjects with Candida infections [15].

Mice subjects that consumed olive oil without oregano oil died after 10 days [15].

What You’ll Need:

  • 5 drops of oregano oil
  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Combine oregano oil and olive oil.
  • Apply oil mixture to affected areas of the skin.
  • Use this technique once a day for one to two weeks.

5. Tea Tree Oil

In Australia, tea tree oil is frequently used as a “topical therapeutic agent” [16].

It has been used for the last 100 years as a solution for many infectious diseases [16].

Today, it’s used all over the world as an antifungal and antimicrobial, among many others.

Clinical data suggest that tea tree oil has superior fungicidal actions against Candida albicans, and can, therefore, help in the prevention and treatment of yeast infections [17, 18, 19, 20].

In 2004, tea tree oil’s antimicrobial action was tested against several pathogenic fungi such as Candida albicans and Candida glabrata [17].

Results demonstrated that yeast cells were destroyed by tea tree oil in any concentration in as quickly as six hours [17].

It works by disrupting the yeast’s cellular membrane and functions [17].

Scientists from the University of Western Australia, meanwhile, reported that at 0.25 percent, tea tree oil can wipe out 90 percent of 81 isolates of Candida albicans [19].

Terpinen-4-ol is the main compound in tea tree oil that’s responsible for its antifungal mechanisms [20].

What You’ll Need:

  • 5 drops of tea tree oil
  • 1 teaspoon of sweet almond oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Dilute tea tree oil with sweet almond oil.
  • Gently rub mixture on the affected area of the skin.
  • Do this remedy twice a day for one to two weeks.
  • For those suffering from vaginal yeast infection, add drops of tea tree oil on a tampon.
  • Wear the tampon for two hours, twice a day for one week.

Related: 12 Incredible Health Benefits of Tea Tree Oil (Backed by Evidence)

6. Peppermint

A hybrid of spearmint and water mint, peppermint is much loved for its fragrance, flavor and cooling sensation on the skin [21].

That’s why, many people enjoy applying this on their skin, as it also quickly induces relaxation.

This is not all the peppermint could do for you.

Among the wide array of health problems that can be resolved with peppermint is yeast infection [22].

In fact, peppermint has the strongest fungicidal and antimicrobial properties of the three mint species tested in a 2003 study [23].

Findings revealed that the fungicidal effects of peppermint work even on yeasts that have developed resistance to medications [23].

This makes it ideal for fungal infections that are hard to treat or those that keep on coming back.

Contributing to these actions are the monterpene ketones in peppermint, which include but are not limited to isomenthone and menthone [23].

What You’ll Need:

  • A pot of water
  • 2 tablespoons of peppermint leaves
  • 1 teaspoon of honey

Recommended Directions:

  • Boil water in a pot.
  • Add peppermint leaves.
  • Simmer for five minutes.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Let it steep for 10 minutes.
  • Add honey.
  • Drink peppermint tea once a day for two weeks.

Related: 12 Uses and Health Benefits of Peppermint Oil

7. Rosemary

Many people use rosemary for their cooking, but did you know that this flavorful and fragrant herb is also prized for its medicinal value?

Candida albicans is one of the many types of microorganisms that it can control, according to a 2007 research [24].

In one clinical trial, pneumonia and cancer patients with oral thrush were asked to apply a cotton swab dipped in rosemary oil and water [25].

The treatment, which was done five times a day, resolved yeast infection in only two to four days [25].

This has proven that application of rosemary oil resolved oral thrush in cancer and pneumonia patients who did not respond to regular fungal treatment [25].

What You’ll Need:

  • 4 drops of rosemary oil
  • 1 teaspoon of almond oil
  • Cotton swab

Recommended Directions:

  • Mix rosemary oil and almond oil.
  • Dip the cotton swab into the oil mixture.
  • Swipe cotton swab inside the mouth.
  • Do this five times a day until oral thrush disappears.

Related: 13 Health Benefits and Uses of Rosemary Oil (Backed by Evidence)

8. Calendula

Since the ancient times, calendula has been used in India, China, and Europe to heal wounds, detoxify the blood, treat jaundice, and resolve other issues [26].

Today, it remains a popular home remedy for a wide range of health problems.

Calendula is also used in many parts of the world as a treatment for yeast infections, as it can effectively inhibit the growth and spread of Candida albicans, among others types of microorganisms [27, 28, 29].

After using disk diffusion methods, Brazilian researchers confirmed that calendula is highly effective in combating 23 strains of fungi [27].

Its excellent antifungal activity can be compared to that of fluconazole [28].

What You’ll Need:

  • 3 leaves of calendula plant

Recommended Directions:

  • Crush the leaves.
  • Apply leaves on the affected area.
  • Repeat three times a day for one week.

Related: 12 Impressive Health Benefits of Calendula Oil

9. Olive Leaf Extract

Olive leaf extract has long been used as a traditional medicine for an array of ailments.

Skin infections are just some of the many health troubles that can be resolved using this natural remedy [30].

In 2007, Portuguese scientists assessed the antimicrobial activities of olive leaf extract and found that its phenolic compounds can destroy microorganisms that cause respiratory and intestinal infections such as Candida albicans [31].

These phenolic compounds include caffeic acid, oleuropein, verbascoside, rutin, luteolin 7-O-glucoside, luteolin 4′-O-glucoside and apigenin 7-O-glucoside [31].

Even at low concentrations, olive leaf extract exerts both antibacterial and antifungal properties, which is why researchers believe that it should be used more often in making medications [31].

Another study featured in the Mycoses Journal showed similar positive results, recommending the use of olive leaf extract as a treatment for yeast infections [32].

What You’ll Need:

  • A handful of fresh olive leaves
  • 1 cup of vodka

Recommended Directions:

  • Chop fresh olive leaves finely.
  • Put chopped leaves in an airtight glass jar.
  • Add vodka.
  • Let it sit for four weeks.
  • Strain mixture.
  • Apply the mixture on affected areas of the skin twice a day for one to two weeks.

10. Thyme

Many people know about thyme’s minty and nutty flavor and its unique aroma.

However, many are not aware that it has a wide range of medicinal applications that everyone should take advantage of.

Fact is, thyme has always been used for treating fungal infections, among other types of health issues.

A 2004 study indicates that thyme has strong fungicidal effects on Candida albicans, suggesting the use of this herb in antifungal medications [33].

The great thing about this is that it’s very safe to use and does not have any adverse reactions.

If you’re going to use its oil extract, just make sure that you dilute it first in a carrier oil to prevent irritation.

What You’ll Need:

  • 5 drops of thyme oil
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Combine the two ingredients.
  • Pour mixture into a glass jar.
  • Apply a thin layer of oil mixture on affected areas of the skin.
  • Do this remedy twice a day for two weeks.
  • Or gargle the mixture inside your mouth for 10 minutes.
  • Spit it out and do not swallow.
  • Repeat procedure every day for one week.

Some Q&A About Yeast Infection

Q. What is the cause of vaginal yeast infection?
A. As you know already, candida is responsible for yeast infections. In case of vaginal yeast infection, it is caused by Candida albicans.

Q. Is vaginal yeast infection a type of STD?
A. No. It is not. It can happen to anyone whether they are sexually active or not.

Q. Is frequent vaginal yeast infections a thing to worry?
A. Yes. It is. But firstly, frequent vaginal yeast infections mean that it has occurred for four times or more than that per year. So, if this occurs, then it is a sign of an underlying problem. Therefore, it is worrying and should be checked on by a doctor.

Q. Can vaginal yeast infections be prevented?
A. Not really, but some lifestyle changes might help you from getting it in the first place. They are:

  • Wearing a cotton based underwear so that less moisture is there in the genital area
    Regularly changing the underwear
    Avoid using feminine hygiene sprays as they may be more harmful than good.

Q. What are the symptoms of oral thrush?
A. Oral thrush is when you see white lesions form on the tongue and inner side of the cheeks in the mouth. It can spread from that place to the whole of the mouth and throat. The common symptoms of oral thrush are:

  • White lesions which are often creamy, appear on the tongue, inner cheeks, the roof of the mouth, gums, and tonsils
  • Redness in appearance
  • Burning sensation and soreness that causes difficulty in eating
  • Bleeding from the lesions
  • Loss of taste

Q. When should I see a doctor if I have oral thrush?
A. If the thrush appears suddenly, then go and see a doctor. It is because oral thrush is not common in older children and adults. Thus, their appearance might be a sign of an underlying condition.

Q. What is esophageal thrush?
A. It is a type of yeast infection that appears in the esophagus or gullet.

Q. Who is at risk from esophageal thrush?
A. People who have a good immune system do not usually develop this problem. However, for those who might have HIV in their body may suffer from this condition. Also, the following things put a person at more risk:

  • smoking
  • wearing dentures
  • asthma patients who have to take steroid inhalers
  • those who have a dry mouth
  • those who eat lots of sugary food

Bottom Line

Yeast infections can cause unpleasant symptoms and thus, should be treated immediately.

Get rid of yeast infections problem right away with the help of these practical and easy-to-use home remedies.

Hope this article was helpful to you.

Read Next: 12 Ways to Get Rid of Jock Itch Using Home Remedies

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