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Are Yeast Infections Contagious?

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Uncontrolled diabetes and prolonged use of antibiotics and corticosteroids are the general causes for yeast infection, and if these conditions are not managed, you may experience repeated attacks.

There are cases however, that yeast infection may spread to a healthy person — usually through sexual intercourse with an infected partner. The yeast cells in the infected person can suddenly overpower the healthy bacteria in your body and they won't be able to put up a fight at all.

Such is the case for men that engage in unprotected sex with a partner with yeast infection. It's reported that up to 15 percent of male partners of women with candidiasis may end up with penile yeast infection.1

In a lesbian partnership, there is still a chance you may get candidiasis if your partner is infected. There is very little information in this subject, but the Office on Women's Health doesn't rule out this possibility as a cause for yeast infection to spread between two females.2

Other Factors That Make You Susceptible to Yeast Infection

The chances of getting yeast infection from someone else are actually very slim, and you're more likely to develop yeast infection because of any of the following factors:

Having a Weakened Immune System3

Those who have conditions such as arthritis or autoimmune diseases like lupus generally take corticosteroids to manage the symptoms. However, corticosteroids weaken your immune system, leaving the door wide open for yeast infection.

Sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS weaken your immune system as well.

Staying in Hospitals4

People go to hospitals to treat their disease, but ironically, you may get sick by going there as well. Devices such as central venous catheters can make it easier for fungi to enter your body and cause an infection.

Fungal infections may also appear on the area where you just had surgery. Incidents like these are classified as healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).

Type 2 Diabetes5

Those who have type 2 diabetes, especially women, have a higher chance of getting yeast infection. Elevated blood sugar levels are linked to yeast infection, because sugar is the main fuel for yeast. Reducing sugar intake and increasing healthy fat consumption from organic foods may help stabilize your blood sugar levels.

Pregnancy6

During pregnancy, women tend to produce higher amounts of estrogen. This in turn, makes the vagina produce more glycogen, a type of stored glucose that acts as a backup energy source.7 As a result, pregnant women tend to get vaginal yeast infection, since yeast feeds on sugar. Fortunately, yeast infection won't affect your baby if it's treated immediately.

However, should you still have an infection when you give birth, your infant may get some of the yeast as he passes through your birth canal, and may end up with oral candidiasis.

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