A type of fungus called Candida commonly causes yeast infections in babies. These infections most often occur when the skin's barrier defenses fail, allowing Candida that normally lives on the skin's surface invade the superficial skin tissue. Yeast thrives in warm, moist areas. Candida infection is a common cause of diaper rash, especially in association with diarrhea. Frequent drooling makes the area around the mouth and under the chin susceptible to yeast infections. Candida skin infections typically appear as bright red patches, often with surrounding red bumps called satellite lesions. The rash is typically most prominent in the skin creases. Candida rashes are often painful, and infants with diaper rash may be fussy, especially around changing time. Diaper rashes and similar skin infections caused by yeast are usually easily treated with antifungal creams and ointments.
To treat vaginal yeast infections and thrush, a mother has several options. Dr. William Sears says the nursing mother can safely treat her yeast infection in the traditional manner by using over-the-counter yeast infection creams or the prescription drug Diflucan. Sears says it's important, though, to treat the nipples if it appears that the yeast has spread to the nipples. Over-the-counter treatments such as clotrimazole (Lotrimin or Mycelex) or miconazole (Mycatin or Monistat-Derm) can be applied to the nipples after feedings two to four times a day. Use until the symptoms have cleared up for two days. These medications are safe to take while nursing and don't affect a woman's ability to breastfeed.
In people who have a weakened immune system because of cancer treatments, steroids, or diseases such as AIDS, candida infections can occur throughout the entire body and can be life-threatening. The blood, brain, eye, kidney, and heart are most frequently affected, but Candida also can grow in the lungs, liver, and spleen. Candida is a leading cause of esophagitis (inflammation in the swallowing tube) in people with AIDS.
Vaginal yeast infections, also called candida vaginal infections or candidiasis, are common and easily treated in most women. Candida is a fungus. It commonly exists in small amounts in the vagina, mouth and gastrointestinal tract. When the fungus overgrows in the vagina, a yeast infection develops. This causes uncomfortable symptoms such as vaginal itching, burning and discharge. Uncontrolled diabetes and the use of antibiotics, the contraceptive sponge, the diaphragm and spermicides are associated with more frequent yeast infections. Women who use hormonal birth control—birth control pills, the birth control patch or the vaginal ring—may also have more yeast infections.
Contact your doctor as soon as possible if you think your baby has a yeast infection of any type. Seek immediate medical attention if your baby is having difficulty eating. Also contact your doctor immediately or seek emergency medical care if your baby has a fever or low body temperature, is drowsy or difficult to awaken, or experiences rapid, labored or irregular breathing.
Is it legit? Not completely. “Using [probiotics] to treat a yeast infection is not always effective,” Dr. Ross says. The lactobacillus acidophilus cultures in yogurt are thought to be an effective way of removing the excessive yeast built up in the vagina. “Medical studies have found using yogurt to treat yeast is more effective than a placebo,” she adds.
Take antibiotics only when prescribed by your health care professional and never take them for more or less time than directed. In addition to destroying bacteria that cause illness, antibiotics kill off the "good" bacteria that normally live in the vagina. Stopping treatment early, even when symptoms have improved, can cause infections to return and make them resistant to the medication.
If you are using a vaginal cream or suppository for treatment, refrain from using tampons, as they can block or remove the medication. Opt for a deodorant-free pad or liner if menstruating or just to protect your clothes from leakage, and change it often to prevent additional moisture build-up. Douching is never advised and it is especially to be avoided while you clearing a yeast infection.
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