The short answer is no, there are no yeast infection treatments specifically designed for men. However, there are treatments targetted at women specifically, so it's important you get the right one. Here we'll look at different treatment options for male yeast infections, but first, here are some quick facts about yeast infections that you should know:
- Yeast infection in men is called Candida Balanitis
- It is caused by a fungus called Candida
- Candida can be normally found on our skin. Moist surfaces can help the Candida overgrow and this overgrowth causes symptoms to manifest
- The symptoms present as an itchy rash, red skin, swelling, irritation and itching around the head of the penis. There is also lumps found under the skin and urination and sexual intercourse becomes painful
- Some men are at a higher risk of having a yeast infection. These include the use of antibiotics and corticosteroids. Men who have immunosuppression, diabetes, poor hygiene and unnecessary use of cleansing products.
- A yeast infection is not a form of sexually transmitted infection (STI)
- Transmission of this candida fungus can occur during vaginal intercourse
- Some treatment options of Candida Balanitis are oral and topical antifungals
- Ensuring and practicing good hygiene can prevent this infection
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Treatment options for yeast infections can be found easily in most pharmacies. They are available for purchase over-the-counter without a doctor’s prescription. Treatments include topical imidazoles such as clotrimazole, ketoconazole and miconazole. They work by breaking down the walls of the fungal cells.
As with any medication, these topical treatments can present with some side effects. The most common side effect is the burning sensation after application, however, this is mild in nature. If the burning is severe and you develop serious skin irritation, stop using the cream and contact your doctor.
In addition to medical treatment options, there are a variety of home remedies that can be done from the comfort of your bedroom.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has been found to have a variety of healing properties including antibacterial, antiprotozoal, antifungal and antiviral properties. This antifungal property will help combat the fungal yeast infection when applied to the head and the surrounding area of the penis. When using tea tree oil, it is important to check the strength of the tea tree oil. If buying pure tea tree oil, make sure to dilute it with some olive oil to ensure it is at an appropriate strength for skin application.
Yogurt is a known natural probiotic. Increasing your intake of yogurt will have positive effects on your health. It promotes positive bacterial growth which in turn helps fight infections in the body such as Candida. Alternatively, yogurt can be applied directly to the penis but make sure you are using yogurt that contains live bacteria.
Garlic is also a natural ingredient with antifungal and antibacterial properties. Integrating garlic into your diet has many positive health benefits. In a study published in 2010, comparing a common medical treatment for Candida Balanitis (clotrimazole) to a cream containing garlic and thyme found that the cream provided the same healing benefits as clotrimazole while having reduced side effects.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has specific antifungal properties against Candida species of yeast. This, too, can be applied directly to the affected area. Do bear in mind that apple cider vinegar has a strong vinegary smell, however, this fades over time. Dilute the apple cider vinegar with some water before application.
Along with possessing a variety of health benefits, coconut oil also has microbial properties. Another study in 2007 found that coconut oil is active against Candida species when used at a 100% concentration. It also has added benefits of relieving constipation, repairs hair and moisturizes the skin.
Tips to prevent a yeast infection
- Wear loose-fitting clothes
- Ensure to dry yourself properties
- Use water to wash your private areas instead of soap
- Regularly keep your private areas clean
- Use soaps to wash your private areas
- Do not use deodorants on your private areas
- Avoid tight clothing
- Refrain from having sex until the infection has cleared
- "Top 5 Best Male Yeast Infection Home Remedies", 2020 [accessed 3 April 2020].
- "Thrush in men and women", 2020 https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/thrush-in-men-and-women/#self-care [accessed 3 April 2020].
- Ogbolu, D, A Oni, O Daini, & A Oloko, "In VitroAntimicrobial Properties of Coconut Oil on CandidaSpecies in Ibadan, Nigeria.". in Journal of Medicinal Food, 10, 2007, 384-387.
- Bahadoran P, e, "Investigating the therapeutic effect of vaginal cream containing garlic and thyme compared to clotrimazole cream for the treatment of mycotic vagin... - PubMed - NCBI.". in Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, 2020 [accessed 3 April 2020].
- "Thrush in men symptoms and treatments", 2020 [accessed 3 April 2020].