For many, understanding and managing recurring Candida/Yeast infection, is a lifelong ordeal.
- Candida (short for Candida Albicans) is part of a group of bacteria responsible for a number of health problems. It lives naturally in your body and thrives in moist dark places like your intestines.
- One of the most common causes of Candida overgrowth is a compromised immune system. People with HIV/Aids can be particularly susceptible and young children and the elderly are also more vulnerable.
- A common cause of Candida (as it relates to previous illness) is the over-prescribing of antibiotics (including those from meat and animal products) which kill bacteria including the good onesthat help balance your body and your digestive system.
- Another common cause of Candida overgrowth is actually quite simple to reverse. Candida grows naturally in the gut. However, if you have infrequent bowel movements and become constipated, it gives Candida fuel to grow.
- Excess consumption of sugar and sugar containing products
- Diabetes mellitus
- Mercury from mercury amalgam dental fillings
- Chlorine from drinking and bathing/swimming water
The complications of Candida arise when it “overgrows.” Like yeast or any other fungus, Candida thrives on sugar and lives in warm dark environments. Places like your stomach, genitals, mouth and even your eyes can be hospitable environments for Candida.
It can actually spread throughout your entire body, taking over your organs and invading your blood stream. When this happens, death is a very real risk.
An “overgrowth” of Candida causes a number of health complications and problems. While there are many over the counter treatments that can and do work for mild and infrequent cases of Candidiasis, often times a medical diagnosis is required.
- Candida can cause weight gain. In addition to causing bloating and constipation which will make you retain water and food you have consumed, people suffering from Candida overgrowth tend to crave sweets and even alcohol and fermented foods. This is because these are the fuel sources for the Candida bacteria.
- Poor memory and unfocused thinking. Candida affects all of your systems including your neurological systems. When you are low on energy and trying to protect your body from these bacteria that is thriving in your body, your mind can suffer. You can experience foggy thinking, an inability to focus and your memory may suffer.
- Skin problems. In addition to rashes many people who suffer from Candida overgrowth also suffer from acne.
- Chronic illness. There’s a bit of a “catch 22? when it comes to Candida symptoms. A compromised immune system can causeCandida overgrowth however Candida overgrowth can also cause a compromised immune system.
- If your body is struggling to function, your immune system will be weakened. You’ll be more likely to contract colds and viruses.
- Abdominal discomfort. Common symptoms of intestinal overgrowth include gas, bloating and diarrhea. In fact, several digestive disorders like IBS have been linked to Candida.
- Headaches and migraines.Interestingly enough, one of the common signs of Candida overgrowth are headaches. This is because Candida can enter your blood stream and wreak all sorts of havoc on your body.
- Chronic fatigue. It’s exhausting for your body to constantly be combating Candida. In addition to battling the bad bacteria, your body has to compensate for the systems that are being attacked. This can cause extreme fatigue.
Treatment is generally over the counter, although there are some commonly prescribed medications. The real challenge is that if you’re one of those women susceptible to Candida, you’re likely to see a recurrence, unless you change your habits and lifestyle.Often an antifungal will be prescribed. It may be topical or oral, depending on the site of your infection and your symptoms. Antifungals are effective for alleviating immediate symptoms. However, if your lifestyle supports Candida overgrowth, you may suffer from recurring and chronic infections. In this case, you need to take more action than a simple antifungal. And antifungals have side effects so tread lightly here.
When To Seek Medical Advice
- If you’re suffering from an infection caused by Candida overgrowth,even if it’s your first infection, it is important to visit your doctor to confirm that it is, in fact. Candidiasis.
- If you are running a fever or suffer from immune deficiency it’s important to get to the doctor right away. There are real dangers to your life if Candida becomes systemic.
- There are also underlying symptoms that point to Candida overgrowth including chronic fatigue, gastrointestinal distress, depression, weight gain, headaches and chronic illness. If you suspect you have Candida overgrowth, visit your physician for a diagnosis.