Reoccurring yeast infections are a common problem for many women, and they can be frustrating and uncomfortable to deal with. Yeast infections are caused by an overgrowth of the fungus candida albicans, which is normally present in the vagina in small amounts. When the balance of yeast and bacteria in the vagina is disrupted, candida can overgrow and cause an infection. Here are some of the main causes of reoccurring yeast infections:
Damage to the skin: Any damage to the skin around the vaginal area can make it easier for candida to infect the area. This includes things like irritation from tight clothing or harsh soaps, cuts or tears from sexual activity, or even scratches from scratching.
Warm or humid conditions: Yeast thrives in warm and humid environments, which is why infections are more common during the summer months or in areas with high humidity. Tight-fitting clothing or synthetic fabrics can also create a warm and humid environment, making it easier for candida to grow.
Weak immune system: A weakened immune system can make it easier for candida to take hold and cause an infection. This can happen if you have an underlying medical condition like HIV, or if you are taking medications like steroids or chemotherapy that suppress the immune system.
Antibiotics: Antibiotics are designed to kill bacteria, but they can also kill the beneficial bacteria that keep candida in check. This can lead to an overgrowth of candida and a yeast infection.
Lack of lactobacillus: The bacteria lactobacillus naturally inhabit the vagina and help keep candida in check. If the balance of lactobacillus is disrupted, candida can overgrow and cause an infection.
If you are experiencing reoccurring yeast infections, it is important to speak with your healthcare provider to determine the underlying cause. Treatment may include antifungal medication, changes to your diet or lifestyle, or other interventions to address the root cause of the problem. With proper care and treatment, you can overcome reoccurring yeast infections and get back to feeling comfortable and healthy.
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that are found naturally in the body, as well as in certain foods and supplements.
Probiotics can also help to reduce the risk of yeast infections in several ways:
They help to restore the natural balance of bacteria in the vagina: When the balance of bacteria in the vagina is disrupted, it can lead to an overgrowth of candida and a yeast infection. Probiotics can help to restore the natural balance of bacteria in the vagina, preventing candida from overgrowing and causing an infection.
They boost the immune system: A strong immune system is important for fighting off infections, including yeast infections. Probiotics have been shown to boost the immune system, helping to prevent infections and promoting overall health.
They produce lactic acid: Probiotics produce lactic acid, which helps to maintain a slightly acidic environment in the vagina. Candida thrives in an alkaline environment, so by keeping the vagina slightly acidic, probiotics can help to prevent candida from overgrowing.
They can reduce inflammation: Inflammation can make it easier for candida to take hold and cause an infection. Probiotics have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to reduce inflammation and prevent infections.
Overall, probiotics can be an effective way to reduce the risk of yeast infections and promote overall vaginal health. If you are experiencing recurrent yeast infections, talk to your healthcare provider about incorporating probiotics into your treatment plan.