Risk factorsBy Mayo Clinic staff
Factors that increase your risk of developing a yeast infection include:
- Antibiotic use. Yeast infections are common in women who take antibiotics. Broad-spectrum antibiotics — those that are effective against a wide range of bacteria — kill healthy bacteria in your vagina, which can lead to the overgrowth of yeast.
- Increased estrogen levels. Yeast infections appear to occur more frequently in women with increased estrogen levels — for instance, in women who are pregnant, those taking high-dose estrogen birth control pills or those taking estrogen hormone therapy.
- Uncontrolled diabetes. In women who have diabetes, those with poorly controlled blood sugar levels are more likely to develop yeast infections than are women who have diabetes under control.
- Impaired immune system. Women with lowered immunity — such as from corticosteroid therapy or HIV infection — are more likely to get yeast infections.
- Sexual activity. Although yeast infections aren't considered sexually transmitted infections, one way the candida organism can be introduced into your vagina is through sexual contact.
- Vaginal yeast infections fact sheet. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health. http://womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/vaginal-yeast-infections.cfm. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Vaginitis. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq028.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20120924T1249146853. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Hoffman BL, et al. Williams Gynecology. 2nd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=768. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Mandell GL, et al. Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-443-06839-3..X0001-X--TOP&isbn=978-0-443-06839-3&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, et al. Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines, 2010. MMWR. 2010;59:1. http://www.cdc.gov/std/treatment/2010/STD-Treatment-2010-RR5912.pdf. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2013: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-08373-7..00002-9&isbn=978-0-323-08373-7&about=true&uniqId=343863096-23. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Sobel JD. Candida vulvovaginitis. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Iavazzo C, et al. Boric acid for recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis: The clinical evidence. Journal of Women's Health. 2011;20:1245.
- Watson C, et al. Comprehensive review of conventional and non-conventional methods of management of recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. 2007;47:262.
- Jurden L, et al. Can probiotics safely prevent recurrent vaginitis? The Journal of Family Practice. 2012;61:357.