Thrush in men 

Thrush is a common condition that affects both men and women. It is caused by an overgrowth of a yeast-like fungus, Candida albicans. Most people who develop a yeast infection are healthy, but the natural balance of their skin flora has been disturbed.  

In men, thrush symptoms can be similar to those of a sexually transmitted disease. Some of the male thrush symptoms include burning, itching or other irritation under the foreskin or on the tip of the penis, redness of the head of the penis and a tight foreskin. 

Although vaginal thrush is not an STI, it can be passed back and forth during sex. A weakened immune system, antibiotics or diabetes may make men more susceptible. The following can increase the risk of men getting thrush.

  • If you are taking antibiotics

  • If you are feeling run down 

  • If you are not drying your penis carefully after washing

  • If you use fragranced soaps and shower gels which may irritate the penis 

How to prevent and treat male thrush 

Although a penile yeast infection is easily treated, it is always advised to take precautionary steps to lower the risk of developing one. Ensuring proper hygiene and going for loose-fitting, breathable clothing are some of the simplest and most effective actions to help you prevent male thrush.  

If you have a recent sexual partner who has had thrush and you think you may thrush, don’t worry - thrush can be effectively treated with over-the-counter medication, available from a pharmacist. Some of the treatments that can be used by males, when associated with a partner's infection, include oral capsules, such as Canesten® Thrush Oral Capsule; Canesten® Thrush External Cream is useful to help with prevention of re-infection and can be applied to the head of the penis 2-3 times daily.  
If you have not had a recent partner who has thrush, and have symptoms, you should speak to your doctor about treatment.

Take a look at some additional prevention tips: 

  • Wear loose clothes and breathable cotton underwear that is not too tight 

  • Avoid using aggressive perfumed soaps or shower gels on your genitals 

  • Clean your penis regularly and dry it properly after washing

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