Why Am I Prone to Fungal Infections?

There are 144,000 known species of fungi, and they can be found anywhere. Some are even too small to be seen by the naked eye. They live in the soil, plants, surfaces, and even on people’s skin and inside the body. However, a few hundred of them can make people sick. So you might wonder, “why am I prone to fungal infections?” There’s no quick answer to that, as many factors can cause them.

While most people can be exposed to fungi every day without any adverse reactions, some factors can still cause these fungi to grow and cause symptoms. Most are mild fungal infections, which can cause a rash. But they can become serious if not treated properly.

Knowing the different causes and symptoms of fungal infection will help you find the right solution with the help of a medical professional. If you think you may currently have a fungal infection, it’s best to learn the basics.

The Most Common Types of Fungal Infections

There are many fungal infections, and the best way to find out if you have one is to consult a physician and receive a diagnosis. But to give you an idea, here are some of the most common that you’ll want to watch out for:

  • Athlete’s Foot: Known as tinea pedis, it can affect the skin on your feet, hands, and nails. The infection is caused by a fungus called dermatophytes, which live and thrive in humid and warm areas, such as your toes. Can be rapidly spread in showers, locker rooms and other places athletes congregate.
  • Ringworm: Commonly found in the scalp or skin, ringworm is also called dermatophytes. It grows in damp and humid areas of the body. Forms red rings but starts as a reddish, scaly, itchy rash.
  • Yeast Infection: Some people may think yeast infections only affect the genitals. However, they can also affect one’s mouth, gastrointestinal tract, and skin. The type of fungus that causes yeast infections is Candida Albicans. A small amount of it is already present in the skin, but the spores can multiply and cause an infection.
  • Toenail Fungus: Onychomycosis is a common fungal infection affecting your nail beds, toenails, and fingernails. It will look like a small light-colored spot on your nail. After that, it can spread and change the color of your nails and their shape by making them brittle and thick.

Who is at Risk of Fungal Infections?

The following factors can increase your risk of fungal infection.

Suppressed or Weakened Immune System

If your immune system isn’t working correctly or is weakened due to an illness, your risk of fungal infection is high because you’re vulnerable. Factors such as immunodeficiency disorders, smoking, too much stress and nutrient deficiencies can also contribute to a weakened immune system.

Poor Blood Circulation

Poor blood circulation increases the risk of fungal infection because it prevents your body from distributing nutrients and can compromise immunity response.

Dampness & Humidity

If you work in warm and humid circumstances or sweat heavily, you may be more prone to fungal infections. Fungus loves moist, warm environments. So being constantly exposed to, for example, locker rooms or showers will also increase your exposure to fungal spores.

Certain Medications

Certain medications can affect your body’s ability to fight off fungal infections. For instance, antibiotics can destroy both good and bad bacteria. This can allow fungi to thrive without competition. Cancer treatments can also put you at greater risk of infection.

How to Diagnose Fungal Infections?

Diagnosing a fungal infection starts with a visit to a healthcare professional. You will have to discuss the symptoms with the doctor and have a physical exam. They may scrape your skin, take nail clippings, or clip a strand of hair to send for analysis. 

Other samples they may need to take include the following:

  • Vaginal secretions
  • Blood
  • Urine
  • Sputum (for respiratory fungal infections)
  • Cerebrospinal fluid
  • A tissue sample of the affected organ

It’s worth noting that your physician may also request an x-ray of your chest to determine the amount of tissue damage if they suspect a respiratory fungal infection.

Treatment for Skin Fungal Infections

If your physician diagnoses you with a fungal skin infection, they will likely prescribe you antifungal drugs. Most medications for fungal skin infections are available over the counter in topical form. In most cases they are simply applied directly to the affected area.

Some measures you might need to take to prevent the fungal infection from getting severe:

  • Wear open-toed shoes for fungal infections on your feet
  • Use powder on the affected area
  • Wear clean and dry clothes
  • Keep the affected area dry 

Fight Fungal Infections with the Right Medicine from Medical Monks

Finding the answer to your question, “why am I prone to fungal infections?” can be very difficult. But the key is to keep yourself informed and, if necessary, visit your physician to find a cure.

if you are diagnosed, get your antifungal medications at Medical Monks. Choose only the best to  keep yourself fungus free.

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