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

Answers from Mary M. Gallenberg, M.D.

That depends on the cause of your vaginal infection. Medically speaking, it's OK to have sex when you have a vaginal infection (vaginitis) if the cause isn't a sexually transmitted infection. What's really at stake is your comfort — intercourse might be uncomfortable, even painful, if you have an active vaginal infection.

The most common causes of vaginal infection are:

  • Yeast infection (candidiasis)
  • Bacterial vaginosis
  • Trichomoniasis

Yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis aren't sexually transmitted infections. Avoiding intercourse won't help your infection clear any sooner.

However, trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted infection. To prevent possible reinfection, wait to have intercourse until you and your partner complete treatment and you no longer have symptoms.

Mar. 04, 2014 See more Expert Answers