By Marilyn Milos, RN

Our bodies are covered with bacteria. Healthy bacteria protect our bodies and live in balance with yeast that also lives on our tissue. But certain substances we use for hygiene and even recreation can kill the good bacteria.

These include:

  • Antibiotics
  • Bubble baths
  • Certain soaps or shampoos
  • Some laundry detergents
  • Chlorine (including laundry bleach and what’s put into hot tubs and swimming pools)

When bacteria die, yeast can spread, resulting in inflammation and yeast infections characterized by redness, swelling, itching, or burning during urination.

Some doctors mistake yeast overgrowth for a bacterial infection (balanatis) and prescribe antibiotics. This actually makes the problem worse! Even doctors who recognize when inflammation is due to yeast may prescribe an anti-fungal cream; but rather than trying to kill the yeast, I prefer to encourage the return and growth of healthy bacteria through bacterial replacement therapy.

Here’s how:

  • Buy liquid Acidophilus culture or another probiotic from a local health food store or pharmacy. Apply it to the foreskin of a male or the vulva of a female six times a day. For a baby, pour some of the liquid onto your fingertips and rub it on the foreskin or vulva.
  • A male old enough to help himself can pour some of the liquid into his cupped hand and dip the entire foreskin into the liquid culture, covering the entire afflicted area and then letting the tissue drip dry.
  • A female old enough to help herself, while sitting on the toilet can apply the culture in her cupped hand onto the vulvar tissue, covering the area with the liquid and letting it drip dry.

Healing usually occurs in three to five days.

If the yeast overgrowth is caused by antibiotics, then Acidophilus culture or other probiotic also should be taken internally two hours after each dose of antibiotic and several times before the next dose. Keep taking the probiotics for 2-3 days after finishing the course of antibiotics. If the foreskin or vulva are also affected by the antibiotic, use the culture externally as described above.

During the treatment, use only plain warm water on the skin – no bubble baths, soaps, lotions, and no chlorinated hot tubs or swimming pools. After that, when swimming in highly chlorinated water, you can use a non-petroleum jelly on the foreskin prior to entering the water; wipe it off after showering to remove the chlorine and then the protective substance.

Some other tips:

  • Couples often pass yeast to each other, so each partner should begin treatment on the same day and continue together.
  • Sweets will exacerbate fungal growth, so cutting down or eliminating sugar intake also will help the body to heal all the faster.
  • Washing an intact penis is easy: retract, rinse with fingertips and warm water (NO soap on the mucosal tissue), and replace the foreskin to its forward position.

No one needs to suffer from yeast infections! If you have any questions on the above, you can write to me (Marilyn) at [email protected].