Candida is a naturally occurring fungus. When overgrown, it can cause an infection on the skin and in the nails. This infection is called candidiasis.
What causes candidiasis:
Skin infections are caused by warm, wet environments. Humid weather, poor hygiene, and tight clothing that rubs and doesn’t breathe well can increase the chances of candidiasis. Antibiotics can also alter the body’s natural Candida, causing an infection to occur.
Candidiasis of the nails can be caused by certain jobs. For instance, those that work with irritating substances, or people who are constantly in water have an increased risk of the condition. Brittle nails can also be caused by genetics and aging. Women experience nail fungus more often than men do.
Symptoms of candidiasis:
Candidiasis of the skin can have visual signs such as redness, rash, scaling, and swelling. These signs are often found where skin touches skin as well as areas that are more difficult to keep dry.
Some examples of these sensitive areas include:
- Fold of Skin
- Under the breast
- Spaces between fingers and toes
- Foreskin of an uncircumcised penis
The infection will most likely itch and feel uncomfortable if not treated.
Signs of candidiasis of the nails are nails that are brittle, easily breakable, or splitting. There are often white or yellow spots under the affected nail. These symptoms can live in fingernails or toenails and can be very painful.
If untreated, the infection can make the nail thicker and even more discolored. Athletes’ foot, the fungus that can spread between the toes and feet, may also occur at the same time.
Preventing candidiasis of the skin and nails:
Prevention is extremely important in keeping the nails and skin healthy. One way to reduce a Candida infection is to lower the amount of sugar consumed. Keeping blood sugar at healthy levels can contribute to healthier skin and nails. This is especially important for people with diabetes.
It is extremely important to keep the skin and nails dry and clean. Changing sweaty or wet clothing, washing with soap, and drying well will help avoid the spread and increase of yeast.
As for the hands and feet, choosing a reputable nail salon will decrease the chances of bacteria moving from customer to customer. It is also important to wear flip flops in public places like pools and showers.