Most Common Yeast Infection Causes
Almost all women will get a yeast infection at some point in their lives and a lot of men will get one, too. So this article will be solely for the purpose of discussing the most common yeast infection causes in men and women.
Yeast (aka Candida) is a fungus that lives on every surface of our bodies and only becomes a problem when the yeast gets out of control causing an overgrowth. This is referred to as a “yeast infection” or Candidiasis.
Since yeast loves warm, moist places, these are typically the areas of the body that show signs of an infection such as:
- nail beds
- between the thighs
- underneath folds of fat that overlap lie on the skin.
A yeast overgrowth can occur for many reasons. While many people have experienced many of the items on the list below, not everyone gets a yeast infection from them. Why some people are more susceptible to these yeast infections causes than others is not really known.
The most prevalent causes of yeast infections are:
- illnesses affecting the immune system (HIV, underactive Thyroid, Lyme Disease, etc.)
- birth control pills
- tight clothing
- wet bathing suits
- having sex with someone with an active infection
- cancer treatments
Let’s discuss some of these causes of yeast infection in detail:
The overuse of antibiotics is number one on our list of yeast infections in women. When the antibiotics kill whatever they were intended to kill, the good bacteria that keeps the yeast in your vagina in checks gets killed as well. This means the yeast is free to flourish and when it does – viola! You got yourself a vaginal yeast infection. Antibiotics play the same role in creating yeast infections in men (except for the vagina part .
For those who are prone to getting yeast infections after taking antibiotics, you can ask your doctor to prescribe an anti-fungal pill (Diflucan) that you can take at the end of your antiobiotic regimen. This is the easiest thing to do to try to head off a full blown yeast infection. I’ve heard that eating yogurt can help stave off a yeast infection but I’ve personally never had luck with that. It’s worth a shot.
Cancer treatments (radiation, chemotherapy, etc.) are cause yeast infections because the treatments kill a lot more than just the cancer when introduced into the body. Many times the good bacteria that is present in the body to keep yeast in check is killed when antibiotics and cancer treatments are administered.
Any type of IV ports, urinary catheter or any device that is implanted directly into your skin can be a conduit for the yeast to enter your body. Drug addicts using dirty and infected needles often inject yeast directly into their deep tissues and blood stream.
Clothing sometimes plays a part in yeast infection causes. Underwear that is not made of cotton is one of the culprits, as is really tight or dirty clothing – these trap moisture and heat, giving the yeast a perfect environment to grow. Pantyhose should be avoided if possible. This is a great excuse for those who like to go without underpants. If you do decide to put some one, ideally they should be undyed and unbleached cotton. Also, did you realize that yeast can live in your underwear? Oh my! Yes, that’s one reason many people keep getting recurring infections – they keep putting on underwear that’s infected. Many experts actually suggest that you go to the trouble to sterilize it somehow – like ironing it or boiling it, etc. We don’t suggest you put it in the microwave. Some of our readers have told us the bad (but funny) stories about how they nuked their panties and they actually melted.
Chemicals are one of the most common yeast infection causes. People don’t think about how various chemicals in our clothing, perfumes, toilet paper, douches, scented tampons or pads, and detergents can totally upset the environment in our crotches or that can sometimes set off an allergic reaction, causing a yeast infection. If you find that certain detergents cause an infection, change to one that’s unscented. Most of the major brands offer an unscented version now. Same with toilet paper – switch to one that’s either unscented or eco friendly. Women should never douche with any type of pre-made douche product. Douching was probably invented by a man. It’s harsh to the vagina and does more harm than good.
It has been suggested by more an just a few women that every time they come into contact with a condom containing the spermicide nonoxynol-9, they get a raging yeast infection. If you see this happening, switch to a brand that doesn’t contain any spermicide and see if that makes a difference. Various lubricants may be yeast infection causes, as well.
Many women get yeast infections due to hormonal changes. Hormonal changes are common causes of yeast infection in pregnant women and women who are taking birth control pills. It’s also a big problem for women going through menopause. Many girls get an infection every month during their period. Unfortunately, I’m not sure of a fix for yeast infections due to hormones.
It’s been said that sugar and foods containing yeast actually feed the yeast overgrowth and perpetuate the problem. While some people may disagree that our diets contribute to the list of yeast infection causes, I wholeheartedly believe that they do. After having a yeast infection for 10 years, I never got totally rid of it until I cleaned up my diet. I have written another post that goes into what to eat/not to eat so I won’t repeat myself here. If you’d like to read that information, you can read it here: Yeast Infection Treatment
There’s a lot of contradictory information on yeast infection causes – some of it comes from our own doctors. We absolutely recommend that you let your physician diagnose your yeast infection before you start treatment on your own. There are also some OTC yeast infection test kits you can buy to let you know if you have a yeast infection or not. At the very least, take one of those OTC tests to find out.
If you need more information and a step by step plan to get rid of your yeast infection, check out this program: Yeast Infection No More. It gets rave reviews from people who have been struggling to get rid of their yeast infections.
Yeast infections are extremely common and even more irritating to those of us who have suffered with them. Take some time to read more of this site and find out if you may have a systemic yeast infection. If you are having recurrent episodes of yeast, it’s time to look a little deeper into the problem. Read about systemic yeast on this page: Systemic Yeast Infection