What Causes a Yeast Infection

What causes a yeast infection? The primary cause of a yeast infection is the change of the pH balance in your vagina, allowing the naturally occurring Candida yeast to grow uncontrolled, but there are several factors that can trigger this change of pH balance. The following factors are known to trigger this change in pH balance:

Hormonal Changes
Hormonal changes, especially those accompanied by the onset of menopause or the use of hormonal birth control methods, can upset your vagina's pH balance. If you are repeatedly getting yeast infections, you may want to talk to your doctor about switching birth control methods or hormone supplements.

Dietary Changes
Some women experience more yeast infections when eating a diet high in sugar and processed foods.

Wearing Tight Clothing
If you wear nylon underwear or tightly fitting nylons, shorts or pajama bottoms, you may be setting yourself up for a change in vaginal pH balance. If you can, go commando at night or at least wear cotton panties that breath well. Don't wear damp bathing suits for long periods of time.

Diabetes
Diabetics often notice an increase in yeast infections when they do not control their sugar levels consistently. If you are diabetic, try to manage your blood sugar level through diet, exercise and medication, if necessary.

Medications
Some medications, in particular antibiotics and some steroids, are known to trigger yeast infections. You may need to discuss alternative medications if you keep getting yeast infections.

How Do You Know if It's a Yeast Infection?
Look for the following symptoms to identify a yeast infection:

  • White, thick, cottage cheese-like discharge
  • Vaginal pain and itching
  • Painful urination
  • Slightly bloody discharge mixed in with the white discharge
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