Choosing a natural yeast infection treatment is a better choice than potentially harmful medications. As such it's important to know your options when it comes to getting rid of candida.
A yeast infection is a common term for vaginal itching or irritation caused by overgrowth of the candida species of yeast. A white vaginal discharge may also be present.
Candida are naturally present in the vagina and on the skin. Infections occur when the body's natural immune system fails to limit the growth of the yeasts.
Here, you will find information about things that can cause candida overgrowth, natural remedies for the symptoms and suggestions for preventing new infections from occurring.
Yeast Infection Causes
The cause in all cases is candida overgrowth. But, what causes that? Ideally, there is a natural balance of yeast and other organisms in the vagina. Things that disrupt the natural balance are the underlying causes. Possible disruptions include...
The introduction of antibiotics coincided with an increased incidence of yeast infections. Bacteria on the skin, in the gut and in the vagina normally limit yeast colonies by feeding on them. Broad spectrum antibiotics are not selective. They kill bad and good bacteria.
Of course, sometimes they are essential, but they are also over-prescribed. Antibiotics do not kill candida and can cause candida overgrowth by killing the yeasts' natural enemy...beneficial bacteria.
In our modern world, there are thousands of antibacterial products on the market. Antibacterial ingredients like triclosan are added to bath soaps, body wash, body lotion, toothpaste, mouthwash and other personal care items. These products are thought to help prevent colds, flu and other bacterial infections, but they might work against us by killing beneficial bacteria that keep yeast under control.
Yeast are present in many foods known as simple carbohydrates. Bread, for example, typically contains yeast. Excessive yeast in the diet could lead to candida overgrowth anywhere in the body.
Simple carbs are also food for the yeast. So, a diet high in simple carbs can be a disruption that leads to vaginal yeast infections for more than one reason. Too many carbs in the diet is also a risk factor for the development of type II diabetes and diabetes increases the risk of yeast infections.
Silk underwear might look nice but it doesn't breathe. Candida thrives in a moist environment. Cotton underwear is far less likely to cause or contribute to a yeast infection.
Tight underwear or tight-fitting pants can cause the problem too. Friction from the material also increases the irritation.
Because candida needs moisture to thrive, wearing wet clothing (wet swimsuits for example) increases the risk of infection. The combination of hot weather and wet swimsuits in the summertime creates the perfect environment for yeast overgrowth.
Weak Immune System
Yeast infections are far more common in people with weak immune systems. Disease, disease treatments and poor nutrient intake are among the causes of poor immune system strength.
When itching, irritation and other symptoms are present, the only treatments with proven effectiveness are creams containing anti-fungal ingredients. These can be purchased over-the-counter and have names with which many women are all too familiar.
For an occasional yeast infection, these creams are quite effective and they usually provide some immediate relief from symptoms.
For frequent yeast infections, something needs to be done to address the cause of the imbalance; the disruption that leads to the initial imbalance. As you read through the list of causes above, you may come up with your own list of “don'ts”. Don't wear tight silky underwear for example.
Other solutions may be less intuitive. The following natural yeast infection treatment options could help you conquer the problem by preventing candida overgrowth.
Probiotics are found in some types of yogurt with active bacterial cultures. Probiotics can also be found in supplement form.
Get More Fruit Fiber
Dietary fiber found in fruits like kiwifruit and blueberries provide the food that beneficial bacteria need to grow. As bacteria counts increase, yeast are pushed out. The balance of natural flora begins in the gut.
Frequent yeast infections may be symptoms of gut flora imbalance, which can be corrected through the use of probiotics and increased fiber intake. The correct type of fiber is sometimes referred to as “prebiotic”.
Reduce Your Intake of Simple Carbs
Simple carbs include breads and processed grains. They are broken down by the digestive system too quickly, causing spikes in blood sugar levels, which is bad for your health in other ways, but also contributes to candida overgrowth.
Take a Good Multi-Nutritional Supplement
A good multi-nutritional supplement will help support the strength of your immune system. Not only will you be less likely to suffer from yeast infections, you may have fewer colds during cold and flu season.
There are some good immune system boosters on the market. They contain natural anti-fungal ingredients like turmeric and ginger. When taken regularly, they may help your overall health, while limiting candida production and growth.
Conclusion: Best Choice for Yeast Infection
The best choice for yeast infections is one of prevention. Remember that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. By following the suggestions you've read about here, you should be yeast infection free for life!