Scholarly Sunday: Why Now, the Causes of Vaginal Yeast Infection

Candida albicans yeast organism is what we call a human commensal organism. Yeast organisms can thrive without oxygen, they reproduce by budding. and they can live without causing medical problems in the vagina, the rectum, and the mouth. Because these are the locations they live oral sex can transmit the organism. Just harboring the organism doesn't produce symptoms but is in the state of symbiosis known as being a commensal. When the numbers of organisms begins to multiply the body sets up a response that clinically becomes an infection. Vaginal Yeast infections are extremely common, often annoying, and the question is what are the causes of infection. Put medically, what moves the growth of yeast colonies from being commensal to an actual infection. The imbalance between the good bacteria, the lactobacilli, and the yeast organisms are ultimately the cause of the infection, and there are causes of the bacteria becoming overwhelmed by yeast organisms. Therefore yeast treatment such as the creams, pills and suppositories will only go so far as a therapy, as they don't treat the underlying cause. Here are some of the reasons:

  • Heat, warmer climates, summer
  • Being Obese
  • Hormonal Contraception
  • Hormonal Therapy in Menopause
  • Pregnancy
  • Diabetes
  • Antibiotics (generally those known as broad spectrum)
  • Menstrual periods (this is more likely a hormonal effect in that the yeast infection rates are higher both before and after the cycle) 
  • HIV disease
  • Stress and stress on your body such as poor sleep, hygiene, poor nutrition 


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