Keeping up with health is of utmost importance for us to be able to perform routine tasks. When exposed to factors that trigger certain types of health problems, the body tends to become weak and have unpleasant symptoms. One such problem is candidiasis, an infection that often affects women but can also develop in men.
The best explanation is the gynecologist Paula Bortolai Martins Araujo (CRM: 127.101), from the Paulista Institute of Obstetrics Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine. Next, read about the types, symptoms, ways of transmission, treatment and prevention of candidiasis.
- Which is
- How to treat
What is candidiasis
According to Araujo, candidiasis is an infection caused by a fungus that is present in the body of women in small quantities without causing any symptoms. However, imbalances such as stress, low immunity, use of antibiotics and other environmental factors can cause its growth and, consequently, the onset of infection?
This fungus, called Candida Albicans, usually lodges in the female genital area, but can cause infection in other areas of the body, as we will see below:
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Types of candidiasis
- Vaginal Candidiasis: develops in women with weakened immune systems or unbalanced vaginal flora;
- Penile Candidiasis: diabetes, poor immune system and poor local hygiene are the main factors that trigger candidiasis in men;
- Candidiasis on the skin: known as candidiasic intertrigo, is a type of infection that can arise from skin friction. Thus, the combination of heat and humidity promotes the proliferation of bacteria and fungi. The most common sites are: armpits, belly, neck, inner thighs, groin and under the breasts;
- Oral Candidiasis: also called "frog", affects children, adults, the elderly and diabetics. It is usually contracted through contact with someone who already has the infection, causing white lesions on the tongue or inside the cheeks.
- Esophageal Candidiasis: or esophageal candidiasis, is an infection that often affects the elderly and people with low immunity.
Being aware of the symptoms of candidiasis and identifying it in advance is of utmost importance for the treatment of candidiasis. Learn more about the signs of infection:
- Itching, peeling and small cracks in the skin and mucous membranes;
- In the case of vaginal candidiasis, itchy area, pain, redness, thick white discharge and plaque formation;
- Symptoms of penile candidiasis include sores, burning, swelling, itching, white discharge and strong odor;
- White spots on the tongue and inside the mouth, pain, difficulty in swallowing food, burning and redness are the main symptoms of oral thrush;
- The symptoms of esophageal candidiasis are nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite and abdominal pain in the chest and when swallowing food.
If you notice any of the above signs, it is time to look for a doctor who can accurately diagnose the infection.
Transmission of candidiasis
Araujo clarifies that candidiasis is not considered a sexually transmitted disease, since the fungus already exists in the vaginal flora. Thus, transmission occurs through contact with the injured skin or the secretion caused by the infection.
• Candidiasis develops when there is an environment conducive to fungal growth, especially when the place is humid and hot. The fall of protective microorganisms due to the use of antibiotics, genital and systemic infections, diabetes, HIV, chronic diseases and pregnancy also favor the emergence of infection ?, complete.
Candidiasis: How to Treat
Candidiasis can be treated with medication or through home remedies. Both can aid in healing and preventing infection. Know more:
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There are several medications for the proper treatment of candidiasis. Locally used antifungal and antimycotic ointments are often the most recommended by doctors. Araujo indicates the main ones:
- Boric acid
Importantly, such remedies should be used under prescription.Self-medication performed to promote immediate relief of symptoms of candidiasis can cause dangerous health side effects.
Take care of immunity and vaginal flora
Low immunity and unbalanced vaginal flora are factors that facilitate the development of candidiasis. Strengthening immunity through proper nutrition and sleeping without panties to prevent fungal proliferation are some measures to fight infection.
Shampoo or chamomile tea sitz baths are ideal for reducing itching and vaginal itching, giving immediate relief from the discomforts caused by candidiasis.
Avoid sex during treatment
In addition to the traditional symptoms of candidiasis, such as irritation, itching and redness in the vaginal area, the woman with the infection may experience pain during intercourse or even contaminate her partner if no condom is used. Therefore it is recommended that the treatment be done completely without the practice of sex.
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Now that you know the main ways to treat candidiasis, with and without medications, check out the ways to prevent infection.
As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. Candidiasis is a common infection in women's lives, but it can be prevented by following a few simple tips:
- Keep the vagina area always dry and ventilated;
- Avoid contact with lycra, lace, jeans and other synthetic fabrics;
- Wear cotton panties;
- Sleep without panties;
- Follow a healthy diet;
- Use a condom during sex;
- Avoid continuous use of tampons;
- Do not smoke, do not drink and maintain medical monitoring for chronic disease control.
As we have seen so far, the weakened immune system is one of the main entry points for the development of candidiasis. In this case, taking good care of your health, following the prevention tips above and maintaining a routine consultation with a gynecologist are key actions to prevent this infection and all the discomforts it brings.
Sources of Candida Organisms (January 2020)
- Prevention and Treatment