In Focus:

Sex during vaginal infection: Is it harmful?

Is it harmful to have sex if I have a vaginal infection?

Answers from Yvonne Butler Tobah, M.D.

Having sex when you have a vaginal infection or vaginal inflammation may be uncomfortable and might make your symptoms worse. If the source of your infection is from a sexually transmitted infection, you may also transmit the infection to your partner. If you have chronic yeast infections (candidiasis), confirmed by a doctor, you may have sex, without concern for worsening symptoms, as long as you're comfortable.


The most common causes of vaginal infection are:

  • Yeast infection (candidiasis)
  • Bacterial vaginosis
  • Trichomoniasis

Yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis aren't sexually transmitted infections, but having n

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