The Bottom Line: Can You Have Sex with a Yeast Infection?

Can you have sex if you have a yeast infection? It’s a good question and one many people ask. So, we’re sharing some facts here so you can make a decision that’s right for you and your partner.

Can You Get a Yeast infection from Having Sex?

Vaginal yeast infections are not considered to be sexually transmitted infections, like chlamydia or herpes. But if you have a yeast infection, it is possible to pass it to your partner. It’s just not that common.

However, because of the bacteria exchange that happens during intercourse or oral sex, it is possible to develop a yeast infection after sex. Having a balance of good and bad bacteria in your vagina is what helps keep yeast (the Candida fungus) in balance as well. The introduction of new bacteria from your partner or sex toy can trigger an overgrowth of fungus that results in a yeast infection.

Can You Have Sex with a Yeast Infection
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Can You Have Sex with a Yeast Infection?

Technically, yes, you can have sex if you have a yeast infection, but you may not want to because your symptoms may make sex painful. Plus, since sex involves a bacteria swap that can cause more fungus growth, having sex can delay healing—making those uncomfortable symptoms of itching and burning last longer. Having sex can also make your symptoms worse.

These reasons are why doctors typically recommend avoiding sexual activity until the infection is gone. In addition, if you’ve been scratching your genital area due to the itchiness, you may have small tears in the skin there, which can allow other viruses or bacteria to enter making you potentially more susceptible to sexually transmitted infections.

If you do decide to have sex while you have a yeast infection, you should tell your partner so the two of you can take precautions and so your partner can also make an informed decision about whether they want to still consent to having sex.

Yeast infection treatment and condoms

One more thing you should keep in mind is that most topical yeast infection treatments, including MONISTAT® topical creams, are oil based. The oil can cause damage to certain condoms (latex and polyisoprene), making them less effective at preventing pregnancy. Wearing a condom is also not a guarantee you won’t pass your yeast infection to your partner—even if odds are low.

How Long Does It Take for a Yeast Infection to Go Away?

Once you start treatment for a yeast infection, the infection should fully clear within seven days. Your symptoms may go away even quicker. When you see products like the MONISTAT® 1-Day Treatment Combination Pack, the MONISTAT® 3-Day Treatment Combination Packs, and the 7-Day Treatment Combination Packs, know that the number of days refers to treatment days not results time.

For example, with the MONISTAT® 3-Day Treatment Combination Pack Ovule®, there are three Ovule® inserts. So for three days in a row, you will insert the treatment capsule into your vagina as directed. The dosage of antifungal treatment in each is enough so that your yeast infection should clear within seven days from the start of treatment. Your symptoms will likely clear within three days.

Whichever treatment you choose, be sure to read the packaging and instructions so you can pick the treatment that is right for you.