Candida Albicans: How Does a Simple Yeast Affect Your Health?
The yeast Candida albicans is a normal component of your digestive system’s flora, a group of microorganisms that assists your body by breaking down the food you eat. However, in certain conditions, the yeast grows out of control, leading to a variety of symptoms. When it happens in isolation, doctors refer to this outcome as a Candida overgrowth. When you experience symptoms time and again, you likely suffer from a condition called chronic candidiasis.
Do You Have Candidiasis?
When you experience an overgrowth of Candida, the condition comes with a potential slew of associated symptoms and signs. Some of the most common examples are vaginal yeast infections and urinary tract infections. If you suffer from chronic candidiasis, you might additionally experience overall malaise and loss of energy, gastrointestinal symptoms or even skin rashes.
If your symptoms seem to be consistent with a Candida overgrowth, but you are not sure whether you have identified the true culprit, a Candida quiz is a helpful aid for self-assessment. A Candida quiz asks a number of questions that mirror the symptoms of the condition. Depending on your responses, the quiz gives you an idea of whether a candidiasis diagnosis might be appropriate.
The Candida quiz places varying importance on different symptoms and risk factors. For example, if you answer in the affirmative for having a history of vaginal yeast infections and taking an antibiotic for longer than one month, the quiz rates your probability of diagnosis highly. On the other hand, you might endorse numerous less-important items without revealing the same tentative diagnosis. Examples include craving carbohydrates, long-term steroid use and frequent rashes.
Seeking Treatment for Candidiasis
One of the easiest ways to mitigate or even resolve the symptoms of Candida overgrowth is by making some simple lifestyle changes. If you have an outbreak of the condition, take a look at factors of your life that might be influencing your health. Medications including antibiotics and steroids are particularly apt to promote the condition. Likewise a diet high in carbohydrates, sugar or alcohol promotes an overgrowth. The frequent release of stress hormones also makes you more likely to experience the condition.
If lifestyle changes do not influence the course of your condition, your symptoms likely warrant treatment from a medical professional. The only way to obtain a definitive diagnosis of candidiasis is from a doctor. Typically, the process involves collection of a stool sample.
If you think you might have a case of candidiasis or overgrowth, make an appointment with a doctor to refine the diagnostic picture. Typically, a combination of lifestyle changes and medication is enough to effectively manage the condition. Left unchecked, the byproducts of a Candida overgrowth pass through the membrane of the intestine and attack other systems, leading to severe symptoms.