What are the most common yeast infection causes? Why do some people get yeast infections, while others don’t? Why do some yeast infections keep coming back?
There is no doubt that humans have been living with yeast as long as we’ve been on this Earth. For that reason, our bodies have developed natural defense systems to prevent infectious outbreaks. When those defenses break down or our chemical balance is disturbed, the harmless yeast that lives in and on our bodies can change to its infectious phase and cause us all sorts of misery. In a way, a yeast infection is always a symptom that something else has gone wrong.
The three most important yeast infection causes are:
1. The balance between yeast and bacteria in your body. For instance, if your “good” bacteria are killed off by antibiotics, the yeast population may grow out of control. A diet that is high in sugar and white flour can cause the same thing. Beneficial bacteria are the body’s first line of defense, so anything that upsets this balance can encourage an explosive population of yeast.
2. The health of your immune system. The second line of defense is your body’s immune system. This system can be damaged by viruses and other illnesses, and by lifestyle choices such as eating a diet that doesn’t provide your body with enough nutrition to stay healthy. Some medical treatments, such as chemotherapy for cancer and corticosteroids for rheumatoid arthritis, can suppress the immune system. When the immune system isn’t healthy, a yeast infection may occur.
3. Your hormone balance. Most of the time, yeast is harmless. However, certain chemical changes can cause yeast to morph into the infectious form. Some things that change our internal chemistry are hormone medications, such as birth control pills, and certain illnesses, such as diabetes and thyroid dysfunction.
If you don’t have a large population of yeast, you are less likely to suffer from an infection. And if your immune system is strong and your body is healthy, the yeast population you do have is unlikely to become infectious.
None of us have total control over our health so there’s no way to guarantee that you will never have another yeast infection. However, there are certain things you can do to better your odds, by reducing the yeast infection causes that may trigger an overgrowth of Candida albicans.
If you do have frequent yeast infections and your doctor has assured you that you don’t have an underlying conditions such as diabetes, a thyroid dysfunction, or a weakened immune system, you’ll want to pay close attention to the things that may be triggering your infections.
Monitoring your environment and health for possible yeast infection causes and risks.
Keep a journal for a while, and jot down anything that you may be doing or experiencing just before the burning and itching starts. This knowledge can be the key to preventing future infections.
The four most common yeast infection causes are pregnancy, (causes hormone changes), the use of antibiotics, (changes the yeast/bacterial balance), diabetes, (causes hormone changes), and the use of corticosteroid medications (impairs the immune system).