It’s an uncomfortable topic, that’s for sure – and words like itching, burning and inflamed only scratch the surface (heeeey-o). Although it’s not often discussed, we know firsthand that sometimes as a woman you’re going to face some uncomfortable things on the road–and we’re here to help.
If you’ve never had a yeast infection, you’re one of the lucky ones, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t get one on your next trip. New products, climates and lifestyle changes can throw off the PH balance of your lady parts, causing an infection that can put a serious damper on your adventure.
So what do you do if you’re traveling and get a yeast infection, but you’re nowhere near a pharmacy? Or you don’t know the language to describe your symptoms? Or they simply do not have the medication you’re looking for?
If you know you’re prone to yeast infections, do yourself a favor and pack some Monistat with the rest of your ‘just in case’ medications. But if you find yourself stuck without traditional treatment options (ie, over-the-counter meds), here are some natural remedies and tips to help you feel better, fast:
- Stay dry and cool. The bacteria that causes yeast infections thrives in moist, warm environments. This means no lounging in a wet bikini. Avoid activities that make you sweat. Take cool showers, and towel off thoroughly.
- Avoid clingy clothing. No panty hose, tights or spandex. Wear cotton panties, as it’s the most breathable fabric. Stick to skirts if possible, or any of your other lose bottoms.
- Avoid harsh soaps and feminine hygiene products, as they will hurt more than help. Avoid anti-bacterial soaps as well, as they will kill the good bacteria that is fighting off your infection.
Now, down to business:
- You may not be near a pharmacy, but chances are you’re near a grocery store. Buy all natural, plain yogurt, and apply it to the affected area (both outside and inside, if it’s present internally). If applying within, lay down to insert. The live cultures in yogurt will help restore your PH balance, plus the cool yogurt will calm the irritation. Apply as needed throughout the day, and liberally before bed.
- This one sounds kind of weird, but worth a try if the yogurt doesn’t do the trick: sew a string through a peeled clove of garlic and insert like a tampon. Garlic kills yeast. This method will be most effective if you catch the yeast infection on the first day of discomfort. Leave the clove in over night and remove in the morning.
- If you’re not into the above garlic idea, make sure to eat 1 to 4 cloves of it a day any way you like. It will help boost your immune system and fight off the infection.
- We heard that tea tree oil can also soothe irritation, but should mainly be used externally. Apply as needed.
- If all else fails, tap into your greatest and most important asset as a solo female traveler – the local ladies. If symptoms persist, ask for advice or where you can see a doctor.