Candida Albicans is the most common type of yeast infection found in the intestinal tract, mouth and vagina. Candida overgrowth may affect skin and other mucous membranes. If the immune system is functioning optimally, this type of yeast infection is rarely serious. However, if the immune system is not functioning properly, the candida infection can migrate to other areas of the body, including the blood and membranes around the heart or brain.
Candida overgrowth is a difficult condition to diagnose because it can affect each sufferer in a different way, on a different part of their body, in a way that may even be unique to that person. For this reason, candida is often misdiagnosed and the symptom is treated instead of the underlying cause, rather like taking a lozenge for a throat infection. Practically, patients often have to diagnose themselves because the symptoms of candida overgrowth are so confusing.
Signs of Candida Overgrowth
1. Mood Disorders
Scientists are still uncovering just how connected our brains and digestive systems are, but we do know that if something is not functioning properly in the gut, it can most certainly affect the neurological system. Individuals with candida overgrowth may experience dramatic mood swings, anxiety, irritability, depression and even panic attacks.
2. Chronic Fatigue
Chronic fatigue syndrome is characterized by sheer exhaustion that cannot be overcome. More specifically, it’s defined as fatigue lasting no less than six months that’s accompanied by additional symptoms such as joint pain, brain fog and headaches. Chronic fatigue is often one of the symptoms of candida overgrowth.
3. Recurring Vaginal and Urinary Tract Infections
When an individual experiences recurring urinary tract infections or vaginal infections, candida overgrowth may be at the root of the problem. It is important to realize that candida can be sexually transmitted, and partners can spread it back and forth. You can reduce the risk by avoiding tight-fitting underwear or pantyhose and avoid hot baths during an active infection.
4. Gastrointestinal Issues
When symptoms such as bloating, gas, stomach cramps and either diarrhea or constipation are present, it’s a clear signal that something is amiss in your digestive tract. One cause may well be insufficient levels of healthy bacteria, which could have been caused by candida overgrowth.
5. Oral Thrush
Candida infections of the mouth (oral candidiasis) are widespread among humans. In addition to the general factors that predispose an individual to candida infection (immunosuppressive drugs and antibiotics), oral candidiasis may also be caused by chronic dry mouth and oral prosthesis (dentures).
Oral candidiasis is characterized by whitish, velvety sores or patches appearing on the mucous membranes lining the inside of the mouth (roof of the mouth and inside the lips and cheeks), as well as the throat and tongue. These whitish sores may slowly increase in size, quantity, and may bleed easily. Occasionally, oral candida infections can manifest as subjective feelings of pain or taste abnormalities.
6. Sinus Infections
Candida overgrowth in the nasal cavity (fungal sinusitis or fungal rhinosinusitis) and the subsequent human immune response (allergic fungal sinusitis) is currently believed to be responsible for some cases of chronic sinusitis. Candida can result in a persistent cough, post-nasal drip, an increase in congestion, seasonal allergies, and general flu-like symptoms. If you experience consistent problems with your sinuses, you should see doctor to check candida infection.
7. Hormonal Imbalance
Hormonal imbalance is one of the candida overgrowth symptoms that presents in many other health conditions. However, it is important to recognize how an infection can cause early menopause, low sex drive, migraines, water retention, endometriosis, mood swings and inability to lose unwanted pounds.
Whilst in the midst of candida overgrowth, your body becomes inflamed, causing the yeast to grow and spread beyond the digestive tract. One of the byproducts of candida actually can mimic estrogen, leading to a serious hormonal imbalance.
8. Skin and Nail Fungal Infections
Fungal infections of the skin (cutaneous fungal infections) are a common phenomenon, affecting millions of people worldwide. Individuals whose hands and/or feet remain wet for prolonged periods of time may be prone to fungal infection around or under their finger and toenails. In these cases, the nail area commonly becomes red and swollen. The nails themselves will become thick and brittle, ultimately becoming destroyed and detached. Although anyone’s nails can become infected by fungus, these types of infections are more common among adults older than 60, and among individuals with diabetes or poor circulation.
Athlete’s foot and fungus in the toenail are common yeast infections, which stem from the same breed of candida. Continued infections may be one of the signs of candida overgrowth.