If you’ve ever had a yeast infection, you know the drill: Try an over-the-counter product and, if that fails, head to the doctor for some antibiotics. That’s all well and good — but it does nothing to stop the next yeast infection, or the next, or … you get the picture.
Like with so many health conditions, the popular conversation on yeast infections revolves around how to treat them — not what causes them, and not how to prevent them. That’s unfortunate, because many yeast infections are preventable. So let’s focus on what causes yeast infections for a moment here, shall we?
Vaginal yeast infections (aka candidiasis) are mainly caused by Candida albicans, a bacteria normally present in the crotch in small amounts. When something causes this candida albicans to multiply rapidly, it results in the symptoms we recognize as a yeast infection – itching, burning, redness, etc.
A lot of things can cause this Candida albicans to go nuts down there — a change in the vaginal environment, sexually transmitted infections, allergic reactions. One of the leading causes is antibiotics. Though antibiotics kill unwanted bacteria, they also kill the good bacteria, including the good bacteria in the vagina — thereby upsetting the vaginal ecosystem and letting the bad yeast take over. A poor diet can also upset your bacterial balance, especially one high in sugar and refined carbohydrates.
Want to prevent yeast infections? Your first step should be to get rid of any environmental triggers you know of. Second, you’ll want to change any dietary factors that might be promoting bad yeast.
Third — and perhaps most importantly — you should start taking a probiotic. This is especially important when you’re on antibiotics, but it’s really a good idea anytime. Look for probiotic foods or supplements that contain Lactobacillus acidophilus, a type of good bacteria that’s especially effective at keeping vaginal yeast under control, or those that contain Enterococcus faecalis, which helps prevent the colonization of bad bacteria all over the body.
To learn more about what causes yeast infections and what you can use to clear them up, head on over to www.preventcandida.com.