Candidiasis, pronounced kahn-di-diya-sis, is more commonly known as thrush or yeast infection. It is caused by a type of fungi called Candida albicans.
Candida albicans is a type of yeast. And yeast is a kind of fungi (like mushrooms and molds). If you’re familiar with fungi then you would know that these thrive in moist and slightly exposed areas. The same thing applies when it comes to your body. It is therefore common to find candidiasis in parts of the body like the mouth, the genitals and other areas where skin folds and keeps a lot of moisture.
But candida is most commonly found in your digestive system. The reason why people don’t get sick because of the mere presence of candida is because good bacteria (called probiotics) keep the candida in check, preventing the fungi from growing to an extent it will do harm to your body.
However, if there is an overgrowth of fungi, your body will react negatively in several ways. The most common of which are:
– Problems in the digestive system
Since it is mostly present in your body, the first to react when there is candida overgrowth will be here. Common symptoms are irregular bowel movement (constipation or diarrhea), bloating and cramps.
– Manifestation of several allergies (food or with other elements like dander or pollen)
This is can be particularly tricky because you could mistake the symptom for a simple allergic reaction. To get a better idea of knowing whether this is candida-triggered or not, observe whether your allergy coincides with other symptoms mentioned.
– Rashes and itching on localized areas of the body, even the mouth. Skin problems that involve flaking and / or “weeping” of the skin (cutaneous candidiasis) that are also indicated by small pustules on the affected area.
– Creamy, white patches inside the mouth are called thrush and are found commonly on the tongue, palate and lips. Moist, but crusty skin at the corners of the mouth is also common.
– Itching and burning sensation in the vaginal area (more commonly known as yeast infection). Studies show that 75% of women would experience this kind of symptom at least once. A thick white or grayish discharge is often present around the vagina. Pain and discomfort during sexual intercourse is also possible.
– Frequent bouts of colds. Fungi do not have a direct cause on colds, but they do have an effect on the immune system. And when the immune system is weakened, you are more prone to catch colds and / or the flu.
The abovementioned symptoms are of the more localized variety and usually, when addressed early, treatment can be simple and recovery quick. However, left unattended, the effects of candidasis can become very serious with symptoms such as:
– Headaches and irritability or being unable to concentrate or getting dizzy easily. This is simply more than just the result of an uncomfortable state due to other symptoms. Problems with concentration could be an indicator that the nervous system is already affected. Exhaustion despite the fact you did not exert too much activity is another indicator that the infection has spread throughout the body and is already systemic (deep candidiasis). More serious steps need to be taken to address the condition.
Despite these alarming indicators there are good news. The first is that most people infected with candidiasis can be treated without having real permanent damage done to their bodies.
The second good news is that people, who get well from candidiasis, for as long as they keep healthy, will be unlikely to undergo the disease the second time. Even those diagnosed with deep candidiasis, for as long as treatment is administered immediately to prevent the infection from reaching major organs, have good prospects for full recovery.
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