What Are the Symptoms of a Yeast Infection?

It can feel like itching or maybe even burning. Or you may experience swelling so extreme, it leads to sores. Whether your symptoms are mild or severe, a yeast infection can be uncomfortable.

Also known as vaginal candidiasis, yeast infections are caused by a fungus. It generally causes your vagina and vulva (the tissues at the opening of the vagina) to itch. There can also be discharge.

Yeast infections are common. Three of every four women get one in their lifetime. And many women get it more than once.

Knowing how to spot the signs and symptoms of a yeast infection can help you get the most effective treatment.

Common Symptoms

If you have a vaginal yeast infection, you’ll most likely experience extreme itching in and around your vagina; this is the most common symptom. Aside from itching, you might also have:

  • Intense burning, especially when you urinate or during sex
  • Swelling and redness around your vulva
  • Pain and soreness in your vagina

You might also have vaginal discharge. The discharge could be:

  • Watery or
  • Thick, white, and odorless, resembling cottage cheese

Signs of a Complicated Infection

Sometimes the symptoms of your yeast infection can be more serious and require extra care. You might need a longer course of treatment or a plan to keep the infection from coming back.

You can develop a more complicated infection if:

Your infection might also be more complicated if it’s caused by a type of fungus that’s not the kind that usually causes yeast infections.

Signs of a complicated infection include:

  • Severe symptoms (such as redness, swelling, and itching so severe that it causes tears or sores)
  • A yeast infection that occurs four or more times in a year

If your symptoms are severe or they don’t get better after treatment with an over-the-counter cream or suppository, call your doctor.

Here are some other reasons to make an appointment:

  • You've developed other kinds of symptoms.
  • This is your first yeast infection.
  • You’re not sure whether you have a yeast infection or something else.

Yeast Infections in Men

Men can get yeast infections too. They can happen when there’s an overgrowth of fungus (candida) on the skin. This can happen if a man has sex with a female partner who has a vaginal yeast infection. It’s more common in men who aren’t circumcised. The symptoms include:

  • Itching, burning, or redness on the penis
  • A thick, white substance in the skin folds of the penis, and moistness
  • Shiny, white areas on the penis
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar, MD on August 17, 2019



Mayo Clinic: “Yeast infection (vaginal).”

Mayo Clinic: “Male yeast infection: How can I tell if I have one?”

WomensHealth.gov: “Vaginal yeast infection.”

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