Most of us have heard of yeast infection in women, but can men get yeast infections too? Although it’s not as common in men as it is in women, men absolutely can get a yeast infection.
While outbreaks can show up on any part of the body, the most common locations are the mouth, skin and genitals. It may be as important for women to know the symptoms of yeast infection in men as it is for the man himself, since yeast infection can be passed from one partner to another during sexual intercourse
Symptoms of yeast infection in men
Yeast infection in men can cause several different symptoms which are not in any particular combination, so if you have any yeast infection symptoms, consult your doctor.
Major symptoms for men include irritation, itching, pain and sometimes sores on the head of the penis or foreskin. Sometimes there is a burning sensation that is similar to that experienced during a urinary tract infection, except that it’s more constant.
Usually there is no white discharge as there is for women, but in some cases a discharge is possible. And it’s very common for yeast infection in men to cause no symptoms whatsoever until they suddenly emerge.
Causes of yeast infection in men
The main causes of male yeast infection include antibiotics, sexual transmission, certain diseases, some medications and a weakened immune system.
The human body normally includes a number of beneficial bacteria to help us digest food and even helps promote a healthy immune system. Even Candida, the yeast that causes yeast infection is present in everyone’s body normally.
Because antibiotics don’t discriminate between good and bad bacteria, taking them when we have an infection also interferes with the balance of good versus bad bacteria. Over time, there is less and less competition for the yeast organisms and they may start to take over. If yeasts such as Candida, the yeast responsible for yeast infections grow to a high enough level, it will cause the symptoms of a yeast infection.
Although yeast infection is not considered a sexually transmitted disease, it can be passed from one partner to another during sexual intercourse. This is why it’s important for both you and your partner to know if you have a yeast infection.
Contact with a partner during a yeast infection does increase your exposure to it. If your body is in a vulnerable state and your partner has a yeast infection, you may get one too. The only way to avoid transmitting a yeast infection caused by sexual intercourse is to refrain from intimate contact while your partner has a yeast infection in order to avoid exposing him or her to it.
Higher sugar levels in your urine when diabetic creates an environment that promotes yeast growth and also reduces your immune system. This means that diabetics are at higher risk for yeast infection no matter what your gender.
Steroids and cancer medications such as chemotherapy and radiation both reduce immune function, which also increases risk of yeast infection. The birth control pill also increases risk of yeast infection. Other diseases affecting the immune system such as HIV/AIDS can also make you more vulnerable to yeast infection.
What to do about it?
Your doctor can identify a yeast infection easily. He or she may ask you about your health history, diet and whether you’ve taken a course of antibiotics recently. Candida isn’t normally a serious disease unless it gets into the blood stream. This is very rare.
Your doctor may give you a topical antifungal medication to treat the yeast infection. There is some reported success with yogurt or vinegar applied to the area to help restore the natural flora balance. There is also reported success by taking probiotics when you’re on an antibiotic or steroids to prevent the yeast overgrowth in the first place.
Chealth: Men’s Health – Candidiasis
YeastMen: Causes of Yeast Infection in Men
Fungus Facts : How to Get Rid of a Yeast Infection