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Yeast infections: just name them, and you already imagine itching, burning and difficulty sitting. You cannot do anything about it, just to hear the word vaginal muscles contract, as if trying to block access to intruders who want to spoil the party and your sexual well-being. Relax, we will tell you everything you need to know. Yeast infections, even if they are not really pleasant, are not the end of the world. Most women worry about yeast infections too much, ask how they got them, what problems they can create in the long run, and how to cure them. But these are absolutely treatable infections – albeit rather stubborn. Let’s explore.
What is yeast infection?
Drug therapy involves the use of antifungal medications: especially clotrimazole in the form of cream or ova to be introduced into the vagina. In some cases, the doctor may prescribe an oral antifungal drug such as fluconazole. There are effective medicinal plants to treat this form of mycosis such as: tea tree, calendula or echinacea.
To prevent yeast infection it is advisable to always dry and clean its private parts from front to back, so as not to carry microorganisms from the anus to the vaginal area. In case of vaginal thrush it is very important to use a condom during any sexual intercourse. It is also recommended to adopt a healthy lifestyle: reduce stress, exercise and follow a balanced diet.
Yeast infection, also called vaginal yeast infection, are contaminations caused by fungi, most time caused by yeast Candida albicans, at the level of the intimate area. It follows an inflammation of the vagina. Yeast infection can also affect the vulva, the small and large lips (external genitalia).
It is not a disease linked to a lack of hygiene but of an infection due to a disturbance of the natural vaginal flora, of which several factors may be the cause.It may happen, following certain variations, that the equilibrium governing the coexistence between the different microorganisms composing the vaginal flora breaks down. As a result some microorganisms like Candida albicans multiply abnormally causing vaginal infection or vulva (small and large lips). We talk about recurrent (or chronic) yeast infection if we observe four episodes or more by an.
How spread is yeast infection?
Yeast infection affects many women, nearly 75% of women would be concerned at least once in their life according to the scientific journal The Lancet and 45% of women would have two or more episodes of yeast infection. Vaginal mycoses develop following a variation in the microorganisms of the vaginal flora, it can follow the development of fungi and thus the appearance of mycoses.
Knowing that vaginal yeast infections are caused by fungi (usually yeasts Candida albicans), some factors can promote the development of this yeast in excess. It should be known that yeast Candida albicans is still present in the vaginal area but in small quantities.
Yeast infection causative agent Candida albicans
Yeast infection is most often caused by Candida albicans (80-92% of cases), but this infection can also be caused by rarer species such as Candida glabrata or Candidade krusei.
Contrary to what many people think, you do not get Candida albicans as an STD. This bacteria is naturally present in your body, just like millions of other bacteria. Thus, when you do not have yeast infection yet, Candida albicans lives in isolation with the other elements of your body. In other words, it is perfectly integrated into the community that is organized inside your body, while doing its job.
And he is doing very good work, so to speak. Candida albicans is part of the waste collection team. As yeast, it helps eliminate other microorganisms, which no longer have any use for your body. Everything is going well until an imbalance occurs.
There are many factors favoring an internal imbalance. Up to a certain moment, other bacteria (and especially probiotics) and your immune defenses help keep the population of Candida albicans under control. As soon as the conditions are favorable, it will multiply to excess, and ‘invade’ various areas of your body. And it does it extremely fast, since Candida albicans has the power to double its population every hour. Now overcrowded, the army of Candida albicans begins to deal damage: it’s official, you have yeast infection.Yeast infection causes several rather unpleasant symptoms.
Yeast infection causes several rather unpleasant symptoms. For women, vaginal / genital yeast infection is the most common. About 75% of women will experience yeast infection at least once in their life. However, there is a high number of yeast infection: gastrointestinal yeast infection, intestinal yeast infection, yeast infection of the tongue, breast yeast infection, and the problem does not stop there, because if your yeast infection is not treated in time, it can become chronic.
Thus, even if your classical yeast infection was anything but pleasant, Candida albicans remained in the form of yeast, and its action was limited locally. But unfortunately, in addition to multiplying very quickly, our army also has the ability to transform itself. Yeast, Candida albicans can become a mold, and vice versa, depending on the environment in which it is located.
In short, a real problem for your immune defenses. As mold, Candida albicans causes much more damage because it now infiltrates your blood, travels, and attacks various elements of your body. You now understand where these itches, burns, stomachaches, allergies, anxiety, depression, fatigue, weight gain can come from. These are actually all symptoms of this mold, which moves and now spreads freely in your body.
Its action is varied and diverse, the most serious being the weakening of your immune system, as well as the perforation of your intestinal wall. It was not only Candida albicans that weakened your natural defenses (you are less protected from other diseases), but it opens the door to your body’s interior to a pile of bacteria and infections, which normally, would never have been able to get into your body. That’s why yeast infection is such a stubborn disease that it’s hard to get rid of.
Yeast infection symptoms
Symptoms may vary in intensity from one case to another, but in general they are always the same and women who have already suffered from this infection will easily recognize the symptoms. During vaginal thrush (vaginal yeast infection), itching and redness appear at first. Then burns, pain and often odorless white losses are often present. Some redness in the genitals (vulva) and pain in the vagina can also appear. To summarize there are 3 typical symptoms of vaginal thrush:
- Severe itching or burning (usually more important during urination) in the vagina and vulva
- Vaginal discharge (whitish and granular losses, often odorless)
- Redness (swelling of tissues)
How is yeast infection diagnosed?
The diagnosis of yeast infection is done by a medical examination and in particular by the collection of secretions (vaginal) with a direct examination under the microscope and culture.Do not start the treatment before the medical diagnosis, because a misuse of the drugs can aggravate symptoms. Self-diagnosis tests
There are still more self-diagnostic tests in the market for vaginal yeast infections. Some tests are able to identify the presence of Candida albicans and Gardnerella vaginalis. One can quote the self-diagnosis test which makes it possible to know if the vaginal infection is caused by bacteria or by fungi (mycosis). The test measures in particular the pH in the vaginal mucosa.
Ask for advice in your pharmacy for more information. In general, drugs called imidazole are used, in particular clotrimazole, to be used in the form of a cream or egg to be introduced into the vagina, as well as tablets. Other molecules may be used such as miconazole or tioconazole.
You can also use an hexetidine-based medicine in the form of eggs (vaginal tablets). In some cases, the doctor may also prescribe oral (tablet) and single-dose fluconazole therapy. In more complicated cases, it may be necessary to take a second dose 72 hours (three days) after the first dose. Ask your pharmacist for advice, he has medication to effectively treat a vaginal thrush and can if necessary refer you to a doctor.
Invasive fungal infections mainly affect patients with impaired immune system and are an increasing problem. The most common invasive fungal infections are yeast and antifungal infections (opportunistic infections) caused by: Candida, Aspergillus, Pneumocystis jiroveci, Mukormykos (Zygomykos), Kryptokocker. Uncommonly occurring are: Trichosporon, Malassezia, Saccharomyces, Hyalohyphomykos, Phaeohyphomykos. Diagnosis of non-native fungi that can cause invasive infections is not discussed here. Examination and sampling for respective fungal infections follows below.
A primary or secondary fungal infection caused by yeast fungi belonging to the genus Candida. The clinical manifestations may be acute, subacute or chronic to episodic. May involve mouth, throat, skin, scalp, vagina, fingers, nails, bronchi, lungs or gastrointestinal tract or may be systemic as in septicemia, meningitis (acute disseminated candidosis), endocarditis and hepatosplen candidosis (chronic disseminated candidosis). Other organs may also be infected such as kidney, eyes, skeletal and joints.
Yeast infection caused by Canadida occurs globally. The fungi are found in all parts of the environment and occur naturally in the normal flora of humans. Etiological agents: Candida albicans, C. glabrata, C. parapsilosis, C. tropicalis, C. krusei, C. dubliniensis, C. Guilliermondii and C. Lucitaniae, and C. Kefir, et al.
Microscopy from normal sterile body fluids and biopsy materials detect yeast cells, with or without hyphae / pseudohyphae. Although candidiasis should occur in cases of invasive yeast infection, retrospective studies show that blood cultures are positive in less than 50% in patients with autopsy-verified invasive candidosis. The most commonly isolated fungus is derived from blood cultures C. albicans, followed by C. glabrata in adults and C. parapsilosis in children. C. Glabrata is more often isolated in elderly patients. In patients with hematological malignancies, non-albicans are predominant in blood.
Candida auris is a new contagious species that can cause severe hard-blooded infections. Some C. auris infections have been resistant to all three classes (Azoles, echinocandins, polyenes) of fungicides. Has caused outbreaks primarily in intensive care units in many countries. Most methods used nowadays for blood culture in clinical routine are essentially equivalent to fungal diagnostics. Often it is pointed out that large volume of blood is particularly important for fungal cultivation. Some systems have special blood culture bottles for fungus. Mycosis IC / F media is more sensitive than aerobic and anaerobic media at the concurrent occurrence of bacterial blood infection. In the presence of yeast in blood cultures, in situ hybridization can provide a quick preliminary response (1.5 hours).
Intravenous blood vessels may, especially if they have been in a long period, be infected with Candida and a dissemination may occur. Blood cultivation should, if possible, not be taken via incoming catheters but should be a complement to peripheral blood cultures. Positive fungus culture from catheter should lead to removal of the catheter, even if there is no evidence of a dissemination.
Positive cultures of fluids occur in neonatal candidosis, but very rarely in adults. Positive urine cultures are common in hospitalized patients with urinary catheters. The clinical significance of candiduri is difficult to evaluate. Positive urinary culture after the blue point of the newborn is believed to be due to hematogenic spread infection and to be diagnostic of invasive candidosis. Renal candidosis is rarely described at ≤ 103 CFU / ml urine. Some authors consider urinary tract infection (if throat urine or sample taken during catheterization) if urine contains ≥ 1×103 CFU / ml.
Positive cultures from BAL (broncoalveolar lavage) are difficult to evaluate and the findings must be related to the patient’s basic disease. In positive crops from peritoneal fluid or abdominal drainage, it is probably about a Candida peritonitis. Cultures of biopsy material are positive in about 20-30%. Direct microscopy is more sensitive. PCR: preliminary results are promising.
To note is that cutaneous infection can be hematogenous spread infection, which occurs in neonates, neutropenic patients and heroin users. Isolates during cultivation should be artificial and resistant. Serological diagnosis of Candida infections is of varying value in clinical practice. In immunocompetent individuals, findings of high or rising antibody titers may indicate active infection. Antibody determinations are less useful for immunosuppressed patients. Several antigen tests are available with varying sensitivity and specificity and limited practical clinical value.
Yeast infection prevention
Yeast infection during pregnancy
Increased vaginal discharge is very common when you are pregnant. Unfortunately, there is not much to do about this. All you need to pay attention to is that the shifts do not have a sharp smell and a weird color. If the movements smell very badly and change color from white / yellow / beige to bright yellow, yellow green, red, maroon, you should contact your midwife immediately.
If you also get itching in your abdomen, this is often a sign of a yeast infection. Most often you can remedy a yeast infection with prescription fungicides. When you get a yeast infection in your vagina, you can use both vaginal tablets and vaginal cream. What to avoid is the insertion caps that are often included in the package, instead use the fingers. Wash your fingers carefully before and after treatment. If your itching does not disappear within the time the package leaflet indicates, you should turn to your midwife.
Pregnant woman infected with yeast infection may in very rare cases suffer from an ascending infection resulting in chorioamnionitis or premature water discharge. Therefore, it is important that you pay attention to your inconvenience.
Yeast infection in children
If you have yeast infection during childbirth, there is a risk that your baby will get the infection. One of the reasons that mucus in the vagina is more common during pregnancy is that the estrogen content in the body increases and the immune system is deteriorating. When you are infected, you get itchy in your vagina and you can get a white and cottage cheese-like discharge.
It may also hurt to have sex because the mucous membrane is irritated. Some also get hurt when they pee. Having a yeast infection in your vagina is harmless but very awkward. There is help to get. Sometimes the infection disappears by itself, but you can also buy prescription-free antifungal agents.
Some worry that the fungal sponge will affect the child in some way, but that risk is very small. If, on the other hand, the mother has a fungal infection during her childbirth, there is a risk that the child will be infected and may then get fungal infection. It is called thrush. In very few cases, children may transmit thrush to the mother’s nipples during breastfeeding.
If a child has thrush, there are small vivid coatings on the cheek inside the mouth and a strong coating on the tongue. Sometimes small red wounds or cracks occur in the throat. If a child is infected, thrush breaks out approximately three weeks after delivery. Like yeast infection and actually being a type of it, thrush is a fungal infection that children can have in other ways than during childbirth.
Yeast infection in men
Contrary to what one might think, Candida infection is common in men as well. If the advertisements of yeast infection treatments generally target women, the problem does exist in men. And the range of treatment is just as wide. Yeast infection in men, and more precisely the mycosis of the glans, is caused by a fungus known as Candida albicans. It is not a serious pathology, but it causes daily discomfort in men, hence the need for effective treatment.
Yeast infection of the genitals in man generally appears at the level of the lower part of the prepuce, and more precisely at the level of the portion of skin called brake which attaches the prepuce. Then it spreads to the glans and the foreskin.
In general, the presence of these different symptoms will be enough for your doctor to make the diagnosis of yeast infection and start the treatment. In some cases, additional tests may be needed to definitively make the diagnosis.
The fungus incriminated in yeast infection is widespread and is responsible for a large percentage of genital infections in both men and women. While the direct causes of human yeast infection are often unknown, some people are more prone to developing the infection than others.
However, it is essential to differentiate the mycosis of the glans in men from other conditions that can be likened to yeast infection. We mention for example balanitis which is characterized by swelling due to inflammation of the glans of the penis. A sample followed by a direct examination and possibly of culture will be enough for your doctor to eliminate the other pathologies and to confirm the Candida albicans infection.
Treatment of yeast infection in men
The treatment of a Candida infection in men can be slightly delicate. Although these infections are relatively common, they are rarely discussed. Most men consider yeast infection of the glans as an apparent problem can be treated with lotions, creams or at the limit a few tablets. The fact is that Candida infection is usually linked to internal dysregulation.
As for the majority of infections that evolve over a period of time, it is rarely a single cause that causes yeast infection in men. This is usually a combination of internal problems and should be treated as such. Using lotions and creams may work temporarily, but if you have recurrent yeast infection, then you should consider a more sophisticated approach to treating the source of the problem. Treating the origin of yeast infection is the key to treatment if you want to get rid of this problem for good.
Surprising facts that’ll change your the way you think about Yeast Infection
Even if you are convinced that you already know everything about yeast infections, read here. You could be favorably surprised.1. Yeast infections are extremely common, but most women do not know how to treat them
According to a recent study, three out of four women contract a yeast infection at least once in their lifetime. 53% of women, however, do not know how to treat them, and two-thirds have no idea how they should be treated. Given that these are really common infections, it is good to know what happens to our vagina in these cases.2. This is not a sexually transmitted infection
Also according to the study cited above, 81% of patients who turn to the gynecologist to treat a yeast infection believe that it is a sexually transmitted disease contracted by the partner. But this is not the case: yeast infections depend on an imbalance of the vaginal pH that favors the growth of yeasts. Often, it is caused by hormones. The causes can be different, from hormonal contraceptives, like the pill, or stress, a weakened immune system, maybe because we sleep a little, or even some environmental factors, maybe if we sweat too much.3. It is not even a bacterial infection
Even more common than the fear of a sexually transmitted infection is the misdiagnosis, or the idea that a yeast infection is actually (and therefore should be treated as) a bacterial infection. It is vaginitis, that is, inflammation of the vagina, and sometimes you risk that yeast infections are mistakenly mistaken for bacterial infections, because the symptoms are similar. But bacteria alter the pH of the vagina differently, and in the case of a bacterial infection antibiotic treatment is required, while for yeast infections an antifungal cream is needed.4. This is not a chronic disease
It seems that 67 % of women fear that yeast infections are incurable. Well, we can take a sigh of reliefs. Just because you have a yeast infection does not mean that you’re dead. Each case of infection depends on an infection in itself, and therefore can be treated every time. And one case of infection does not increase the risk of contracting others later in life. In short, with the right care, just wait a week, which is the time it takes to treat a yeast infection even if the symptoms can disappear after one day of treatment. And after a week, the infection went away completely.5. Yeast infections are more common after pregnancy
Sorry for new mothers, but healthcare professionals explain that yeast infections are more common in women who have children. On the contrary, it seems that most women do not have yeast infections until pregnancy or after birth, that is when hormonal changes occur in the body. Prolactin, the hormone that helps milk production and lactation, stimulates other hormones and can cause an imbalance of pH, explains the gynecologist. It can also block the cycle, and cause symptoms similar to menopause. In fact, even menopausal women have a higher risk of yeast infections.
6. Yeast infections are not always symptomatic
Unfortunately (or fortunately, it depends on how we want to see it) not all women feel itchy, burning and have losses when they have a yeast infection. If your vagina is not particularly sensitive, you may not even have symptoms and do not notice it. Some patients come to me for a control pap smear, and we find out that there is a yeast infection without them noticing it. Some women are particularly sensitive, and small yeast colonization is enough to cause significant burning and itching. Other patients are aware of the symptoms only in case of extensive colonization. However, if the symptoms are not such to cause problems it is not serious if the treatment is postponed.
7. Sugar can be a risk factor
Oh yes, greedy girls may be more at risk. Sugar, as specialists in women’s medicine explain, encourages the proliferation of yeast, and if you eat too much, the risk of an infection increases. If you are predisposed to frequent yeast infections, perhaps you should monitor your diet and avoid taking too much sugar.
8. Yes, you could pass it on to your partner
Sexual intercourse can be bothersome in case of a yeast infection, because the vaginal tissue is irritated and particularly sensitive. But, as specialists explain, you could also pass the yeast infection to your partner. Although, as we said, it is not a sexually transmitted disease, by having unprotected sex when you have a yeast infection your partner may have itching in the penis. So, the ideal is to take care of you for a week and then resume your hot sessions with him!
9. What you wear during work out may be the cause
If after the gym you like to collapse on the sofa (in short, after an hour of spinning we deserve a little rest!), It is better to change your habits. Keeping sweaty clothes on can create an environment conducive to yeast proliferation. Better to change and wear dry clothes immediately after the gym. In short, it does not take much, right?
Yeast infection natural remedies
There are medicinal plants that can be used to obtain good results in yeast infection.
- The tea tree, to be used preferably in the form of an egg.
- The calendula (marigold), to be used preferably in the form of an egg.
- Lemongrass, in the form of essential oil in combination or not with conventional treatments.
- Echinacea, according to the Mayo Clinic (American reference clinic) taking echinacea-based supplements with antifungal cream would have a preventive effect on chronic yeast infection.
In homeopathy, to treat vaginal yeast infections you can use Sepia officinalis 5CH, take for example 3 granules 3 times a day or Candida albicans 9CH, take for example 3 granules 2 times a day.
A study published in 2012 in Egypt has shown that the use of a mixture of honey and yogurt, topically in the vagina, can help in the treatment of vaginal yeast infections, especially in pregnancy.
- Relax, indeed the stress could be a triggering factor. Resting certainly helps strengthen the immune system and therefore reduce vaginal yeast infections.
- Avoid having sex during vaginal thrombosis (at least during the acute phase), this allows the vaginal mucosa to heal completely and avoid contamination to your spouse.
- To soothe the discomfort of yeast infection and waiting for the drugs to work it is possible to apply a cold compress at the lips of the vulva.
Regimen against yeast infection
The long-term treatment of chronic yeast infection, as opposed to local treatment, aims to permanently eradicate the fungus, instead of just curing its symptoms, such as vaginal infections for example. To achieve a deeper action, four points make the backbone of this definitive treatment against the candidate albicans.
Above all, it should be emphasized that Candida albicans should be carefully observed for several months to achieve the desired results. At the end of this treatment, the diet will be corrected, which is why we should not go back to the old habits of excess of sugars. If you fall back on a very sweet diet, you will again favor the appearance of yeast infection. Here are the 4 points to follow to overcome yeast infection:
A strictly observed diet throughout the treatment period, and beyond
- Sugar: Eliminate all foods rich in carbohydrates, refined sugar (sucrose, fructose), maple syrup, citrus fruit juice, honey, dried fruits, fruits in general except apples, cherries, all the berries, pears … Vegetables rich in carbohydrates like potatoes, corn, parsnip.
- Alcohol: remove alcohol and anything that contains alcohol (melons, peanuts, nuts, chocolate, ham, pickles, sparkling drinks, tomatoes).
- Fermented foods: Avoid foods containing yeasts, or molds, or ferments (white bread, fermented cheeses, raw fungi, vinegar, fermented beverages (beer, cider …), soy sauce, tamari, yogurts.
- Cereals: Banish wheat, rye, oats, barley … (Buckwheat is gluten-free, it can replace other cereals).
- Fruits: avoid citrus fruits rich in sugar and citric acid (bananas, oranges, grapefruit, pineapple, limes). As for red fruits, pears and apples, they are accepted.
- Cheeses: eliminate milk and milk products because of lactose and potential antibiotics that can be found there. Organic white cheese is accepted.
It is also advisable to use nutritional supplements, in the form of vitamins and proteins, prescribed and personalized by a practitioner.
A therapeutic action to weaken the Candida.
It is important to weaken Candida albicans in the digestive system, using natural substances to combat its spread and to help regenerate a more balanced intestinal flora. These foods can help you:
- Garlic: It is particularly effective against candida albicans. Its antifungal effects are much more effective than synthetic antifungal drugs.
- Barberry: Its action targets the spleen and reinforces its activity, thus increasing the immune activity of the reticuloendothelial system.
- German chamomile: Many of its compounds have an anti-candida action.
- Grapefruit seed extract: this is a concentrated extract used in micro doses of 2 to 3 drops a day to cleanse the digestive tract of excess Candida.
- Spices: ginger, cinnamon, thyme, lemon balm, rosemary are powerful fungicides.
- Albicansan (candida albicans) is the basic treatment for all chronic yeast infection. The following preparations are complementary.
- Fortakehl (penicillinum roqueforti): For vaginal yeast infection, mycotic eczema, and gastrointestinal yeast infection.
- Pefrakehkl (candida parapsilopsis) for fungus candidiases of the cutaneo-mucous orifices.
- Exmykehl is an association of the three previous preparations.
A program to restore intestinal hygiene:
It is important to restore the intestinal flora to its normal state. For this, nothing better than using probiotics, these good bacteria that are normally found in some yogurts. They protect us from certain micro-organisms (including Candida), limit the production of gas and improve the immune defenses.
Colonic irrigation, or colon hydrotherapy, is also very useful because it allows a deeper cleansing of the colon. This technique involves washing the colon with filtered water, in order to rid it of toxins and other undesirable elements. It is an action that is done at a specialist and under without his control.
Finally, drink plenty of water! By following these anti-candidiasis tips for 1 year, you will set up a new lifestyle that will allow you not only to get rid of candidiasis, but also to find the taste of natural foods, healthier for the body. Although this anti-candidiasis regimen may seem very restrictive at first, you’ll find that you’ll get used to it quickly. And the benefits you will feel will make you want to continue! This anti-candidiasis diet will literally help you regain health, energy and good mood. Once this general treatment applied and respected scrupulously, you can resume your normal life without yeast infection.