A very common home remedy for vaginal infections is yogurt. The idea is to restore the proper balance of bacteria by introducing new Lactobacillus bacteria into your body–either by mouth or directly into your vagina. This method has not been as extensively studied as medical treatments, but it seems to work in small studies and according to word of mouth.
If you use yogurt to treat a vaginal infection, be sure to choose a brand that says on the package that it contains live, active cultures. And use only plain yogurt–nothing with extra sweeteners or fruit mixed in. You can also purchase Lactobacillus acidophilus as a pill or suppository. If you suffer from frequent yeast or bacterial infections, you may want to make yogurt a regular part of your diet, or even apply it topically once a week to prevent infection.
Other home remedies for vaginal infections include:
- Garlic supplements, or a clove of garlic a day, taken by mouth or as a vaginal suppository
- Vitamins C and E
- Eating more fish and nuts, and cutting back on fats from land animals
- Calcium and magnesium, as supplements or in food
- Pau d’arco bark tea as a drink or cooled off and applied directly to the vagina
- Pearl barley tea (about 1 tablespoon of barley boiled in a full saucepan)
Always tell your doctor about any treatments you use, including complementary and alternative treatments. Some of these treatments may have side effects, or they can affect the way other medicines work.