Changes in the pH balance cause yeast infections by making the Candida yeast switch to its infectious form.
Our bodies always have yeast populations, both inside and out, and they rarely cause problems. However, chemical changes in the environment surrounding the yeast can trigger an infection.
Several things can cause changes in the pH balance that trigger a yeast infection. For instance, douching can change the vaginal pH balance enough to start a yeast infection. Since douching may also spread bacterial infections upwards into the uterus and fallopian tubes, most doctors recommend that you avoid douching. When you’re itching and sore, douching seems like a reasonable way to “clean yourself out,” but it’s not a good idea.
Some illnesses, such as diabetes, can also upset the pH balance. And some people believe that a poor diet can contribute to changes in the acidity of the vaginal environment and gut.
Most natural remedies are intended to correct the pH balance
While yogurt is usually eaten as part of a natural anti-yeast regiment, some women apply it directly to their vaginal area in hopes that the acidity of the yogurt, and it’s live bacteria, will stop a yeast overgrowth. Some women also douche with vinegar, although this is not recommended because a douche can force bacteria up into the cervix where they can do major damage. (Bacterial infections often mimic yeast infections). Drinking cranberry juice, (which also helps with urinary infections) may also repair the pH balance.
Of course, if any of these natural remedies don’t quickly eradicate your yeast infection, be sure to make an appointment with your doctor. You may need a more powerful anti-fungal medication, or you may simply have an infection that looks and feels like a yeast infection, but is really something else.