Yeast infections are not that uncommon, but they’re often misunderstood by the general public. In fact, one may go as far as saying that even mere mention of a yeast infection is ‘taboo.’ Understanding what Candida is, what infections it can cause and what the treatments are is the first step toward having a better understanding of Candida and yeast infections in general.
What is Candida?
It is important to note right off the bat that Candida is actually an entire genus of fungal yeasts, rather than just a single type of yeast. Currently, more than 20 different species of Candida can cause a yeast infection, though the most common type occurring tends to be Candida albicans.
Candida is an opportunity fungi, which generally means that it needs the right opportunity in which to cause an infection. This means that the right circumstances need to occur in order for a yeast infection to occur. Candida actually live on the skin of people constantly, so it is not a type of infection that one can ‘catch’ from an infected persons.
What Types of Infections are Caused by Candida?
Typically, yeast infections are referred to as ‘Candidiasis,’ though these yeast infections can also go by different names based on where the infection is occurring. For example, oral thrush or oral Candidiasis is a yeast infection of the mouth.
Other types of yeast infections include skin infections anywhere on the body including under the arms, vaginal yeast infections, nail bed yeast infections or fungal toe infections, intestinal yeast infections, internal penile yeast infections, and “jock itch.”
In more serious cases, the yeast can spread throughout the body and cause a systematic yeast infection or ‘systematic Candidiasis.”. These types of infections can be fatal. Furthermore, they can start off as a simple infection that is simply left untreated and spreads uncontrollably, so it is important to have any yeast infection evaluated and treated appropriately. In cases such as these, you’ll want to seek immediate medical attention at a hospital, especially if you have not yet consulted a candida specialist or physician about your condition.
Treatments for Yeast Infections
First, it is important to recognize that reoccurring yeast infections can signify a more serious health issue, such as AIDs, diabetes or leukemia. Therefore, those who are suffering from recurring yeast infections should seek additional medical attention to determine the underlying causes.
In most instances, the location of the yeast infection will determine the treatment route. For example, with oral thrush, the patient will need to rinse out their mouth with an anti-fungal solution as prescribed by a doctor. With a yeast infection affecting the skin, a topical solution will need to be applied.
Though yeast infections are still considered a taboo subject in today’s society, they’re surprisingly common. This is especially true since the fungi is always present on our bodies. Those who may be infected should seek out a medical professional for proper diagnosis and treatment to prevent a more serious case from occurring.