Antifungal medications fight the fungus that causes a yeast infection to help relieve symptoms and clear the infection completely. These medications are available as oral pills and topical medications that are applied directly to the vagina to cure vaginal infections. Choosing the best antifungal for a yeast infection involves determining which type of medication or combination of medications will provide the quickest and most efficient symptom relief and cure for the infection.
Some people prefer to take an oral antifungal for a yeast infection. Oral medications are typically more potent than topical preparations, so they are often a better choice for severe infections. Antifungals taken by mouth do not provide immediate symptom relief, however, though many oral antifungals require just a single dose of medication. In many countries, an oral antifungal for a yeast infection must be given or prescribed by a physician.
Topical antifungal medications are often used for vaginal yeast infections and are available over-the-counter in many countries. A cream antifungal for a yeast infection is typically applied around and in the vagina and can help provide temporary relief from burning and itching as it fights the infection. Antifungal vaginal suppositories are also available and usually come with disposable applicators. A topical antifungal for a yeast infection is usually used for several days, though single dose vaginal suppositories are available.
Since oral antifungals are often given as a single dose, they are less disruptive and aren’t prone to forgetfulness. A topical antifungal for a yeast infection typically relies on several applications over three to seven days and is most effective when the treatment is applied exactly as directed. Some people find topical applications messy and difficult to apply, making them a less desirable choice, but they do provide symptom relief immediately in many cases. Applying topical medications or suppositories before bed can help patients remember to use the medication daily and minimize the mess since they are lying down.
Some people with a yeast infection require combination treatment. Topical antifungals are usually the first choice to treat an infection, but oral and topical medications can be used together for particularly severe infections. In some areas, stronger topical medications are only available through a physician, though regulations vary. Most yeast infections clear with combination therapy and further treatment is usually unnecessary unless the infections recur frequently.
It is important to have a doctor diagnose a yeast infection before attempting to treat it with an antifungal. While a prescription-strength antifungal for a yeast infection often isn’t necessary, symptoms of yeast infections could actually be symptoms of a different type of infection. These infections aren’t usually serious, but they may require a different type of medication or method of treatment.
A topical antifungal is a medication applied to the skin to help clear up a fungal infection. Different types of antifungals may contain different active ingredients, and many of them are available without a prescription. These types of antifungals are considered to be quite safe, and there are typically very few reported side effects.
Topical antifungals can come in many forms. A cream antifungal is one of the most common. A topical antifungal, however, may also be available as a spray or a gel.
Using a topical antifungal is quite simple. It is rubbed onto the affected area, usually two to three times per day. These types of antifungals should also be applied to the area surrounding the infection as well.
To prevent the infection from spreading to other areas of the body, special care should be taken when applying an antifungal cream. For instance, gloves should be worm when applying the cream or hands should be thoroughly washed afterward. Also, the tip of the container should never touch the infected area.
It will usually take a couple of weeks of topical antifungal treatment for a fungal rash to disappear. Even after the rash is gone, however, an individual should continue to apply a topical fungal to the area. This will help kill any remaining fungi.
Most fungal infections, such as athletes foot or yeast infections, can be cleared up using an over-the-counter topical antifungal cream. Different brands often contain different antifungal agents. If one brand does not clear up the infection, another brand might.
If over-the-counter topical antifungals do not clear up a fungal infection, a sufferer may need a stronger medication. Some doctors may prescribe a topical antifungal in this case. Generally, these antifungals will contain a higher concentration of medicine.
Some common antifungals may include clotrimazole, miconazole, and tioconazole. A topical antifungal may also contain an ingredient to help relieve certain symptoms of a fungal infection, such as itching. Hydrocortisone is commonly found in antifungal creams.
Although antifungal creams are generally considered safe, there is a chance that a user will suffer from mild side effects. Burning, itching, and redness are some of the most commonly reported side effects of topical antifungals. An individual should stop using an antifungal cream and consult a doctor if these side effects are severe. Medical attention is also recommended if an allergic reaction occurs. Symptoms of an allergic reaction may include peeling or blistering of the skin.