Antifungal cream tube and applicator with a light blue background

Things You Must Know About
Over the Counter Medication
for Yeast

By Lizzie De La Cruz
August 3, 2022

Yeast infections are common. They are also often a painful nuisance. Yeast infections are the result of an overgrowth of Candida—a type of fungus that normally lives in areas of the body, such as the vagina and mouth.

What causes yeast infections?

Risk factors for developing an overgrowth of Candida include using hormonal birth control, being pregnant, recently having used antibiotics, having a weakened immune system, and having diabetes. Some common symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection include pain during sexual intercourse, itchiness, soreness around the vagina, unusual discharge from the vagina, and discomfort or pain during urination.

How to choose yeast treatment

Although there are over the counter yeast infection treatments available, it can get confusing. The different options of treatments include tablets, creams and ointments, and vaginal suppositories. Finding the right over the counter yeast infection treatment is important, but so is dosage.

Yeast medication dosage

Over the counter yeast infection treatments may come as one single dose or a daily dose. Read the dosing instructions carefully to use the correct dosage. Many yeast infection treatments like Monistat come in 1-day, 3-day, and 7-day strengths. Over-the-counter vaginal creams and other products you can buy often have the same ingredients to fight a yeast infection as the medication your doctor might prescribe but in less-concentrated doses. That means it may take longer to work, or there’s a chance that your infection will return.

OTC yeast cream

For extreme itch or burning, cream might sound immediately soothing. Most vaginal yeast infections can be treated with an over-the-counter vaginal cream or suppository. Vaginal creams go inside the vagina to kill off the yeast that causes yeast infections. Sometimes called antifungal creams, these products usually come with an applicator that measures the right dose.

Some over the counter yeast infection treatments may come with a cream that is applied to the opening of the vagina and surrounding tissue (called the "vulva") and not into the vagina. This type of cream may ease itching and treat the skin tissues while the vaginal antifungal cream treats yeast infection. Vaginal creams can be messy and may leak out during the day, so you’ll only want to use them at bedtime.

Yeast symptom relief

Over the counter yeast infection treatments that only address the symptoms of burning and itching include the ingredients benzocaine (a numbing agent), resorcinol, and sometimes hydrocortisone (a mild steroid). These medications will treat your symptoms, but they won’t treat the root cause of your infection.

Among the many over the counter yeast infection treatments, there is a local anesthetic cream containing benzocaine 5% and resorcinol 2%. If you’re looking for something to numb symptoms fast, look for a combination of those two ingredients.

The antifungal medications in vaginal creams (such as clotrimazole and miconazole) may also be available as vaginal tablets or suppositories. These treatments are inserted into the vagina and dissolve to release the medication. Some over the counter yeast infection treatments call them "ovules," because they're oval-shaped. These products often come packaged with a plastic "inserter" that helps get the medication to the right place.

Doctor-trusted yeast infection treatment

Although there are effective over the counter yeast infection treatments, doctors trust an oral tablet called fluconazole to treat yeast infections fast. It’s just one oral tablet—no muss, no fuss. There’s no multi-day treatment regimen, or messy cream to apply. One tablet is all you need to cure your yeast infection. With all medications, it’s extremely important and an absolute must to complete the whole treatment, even if you feel better. Completing your treatment will ensure your infection goes away and stays away.

Get Yeast Infection Medication Online


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