Protect Yourself – Fungal Infections Can Be Lifethreatening

From single cells to chains of cells covering several miles, fungi have the ability to spread very rapidly. Sometimes that means you experience some mild discomfort, other times it leads to serious illness. Fungal infections are most devastating when another serious condition compromises your immune system, allowing fungi to grow unchecked in your system.

Fungal infections can be so insidious that can even be mis-diagnosed as leukemia. When our bodies’ natural defenses are diminished, either from a course of antibiotics that have killed off healthy  bacteria in the gut, or from weakened immunity from another illness, fungal infections can kill.

Common Fungal Infections

Candida albicans is the most common type of fungus that ordinarily resides harmlessly in the human gut. When the body’s immune reserves undergo stress and drop, these microorganisms can rapidly multiply and cause several conditions. Candidiasis – fungal infections – of the skin, fingers, toenails and hair cause an extremely itchy rash and inflammation. Athlete’s foot and ringworm are the familiar names of fungal diseases. Fungal infections can affect the urogenital tract, particularly in women, and vaginal infections caused by Candida afflict women worldwide. Research shows that 75% of women have been diagnosed with vaginal yeast infection at least once in their lifetime.*

Causes range from hormones to the use of oral contraceptives, and antibiotics, such as tetracycline. Necessary to treat certain types of bacterial infections, they act, however, by destroying the “good bacteria” along with the bad, disturbing the microbial harmony within the human body. This results in increased susceptibility to the harmful proliferation of the Candida, leading to infections.

Serious Systemic Fungal Infections

These infections result from a greatly diminished immune system. AIDS/HIV and cancer patients, diabetics and people receiving corticosteroid therapy have an increased risk of contracting the more virulent form of Candida infections. Infection may begin at a superficial level – skin or hair – permeating the deeper layers of tissues and dissolving in the bloodstream. Once lodged there, candidiasis can affect several body organs – lungs, heart, brain and kidneys. Potentially life threatening, this type of fungal infection causes varying symptoms, chronic in nature, and can include chills, fevers, loss of appetite and depression. While these infections occur infrequently, they tend to be resistant to therapy. High doses of anti-fungal agents may be needed.

Repopulating Our Defense Forces – The Good Bacteria

Maintaining the delicate balance of bacteria in the gut is vital to the health of every individual. Probiotics act as boosters to the body’s production of good bacteria, helping them colonize and repopulate to healthy levels. These fermented foods – yogurt, kefir, cheese, and many others, provide natural nutrients that supplement the body’s resources and help it to combat problems when they arise.

Stress, illness and environmental factors take a toll on the immune system from time to time as well. A healthy diet with adequate exercxise can help boost your overall immunity to help keep fungal infections away.

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Immunity problems can lead to many types of fungal infection. Patients can find relief through toenail fungus Houston Nail Clinic laser treatments that quickly cure the infection.  

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