Skin fungus infections can at times be hard to recognize by the practitioner, and difficult to diagnose. I have on many occasions had patients present in my clinic with a yeast skin infection, only to be told that it was a case of eczema, psoriasis or even dermatitis by their doctor. It is easy to become confused, because the itching, flaking, redness, and thickened skin of fungal infections can look just like other types of dermatitis or skin allergy. This is further compounded by the fact that people with eczema may find that their skin becomes infected with fungi, so both conditions may present simultaneously.
The patient above has a typical yeast infection under her breast, something I have seen many hundreds of times in women, and in men as well. Again, it can be diagnosed as eczema, psoriasis and even dermatitis by some practitioners. Think about yeast infections on the skin when the patient complains about incessant itching, redness and the skin problems are in the creases and folds of the body, the warm, dark and moist places. With a little experience you will readily see the difference between a fungal skin issue and eczema, which may also affect the flexure areas of the body.
Check out my 8 home tests for candida, the itch test can be a real key here, especially if you have associated symptoms like bloating, gas, constipation or diarrhoea as well. And the big question one is, did all these problems start after one or several courses of antibiotics or long-term use of the oral contraceptive pill? Doctors are not generally that good in taking the case long-term, they tend to treat the presenting complaint there and then. Pathology based laboratory technicians use microscopes to help them diagnose skin fungus infections, so there’s no way you can really be exactly sure at home.
Why Is The Skin Prone To Yeast Infections?
The skin is the largest organ in the body. It protects your insides from the outside and more importantly keeps your insides from becoming outsides. It also can reveal many inside health problems because it does release toxins in the form of sweat from the body. Your skin may be hairy like this picture, or smooth and free of hair. It may be moist or dry. Skin lesions can be at times early indications of a systemic internal yeast infection. Humans are an excellent breeding ground for fungi, their bodies have many places where yeast infections can thrive: the digestive tract, the vagina, the warm, moist folds of the skin, the feet, and plenty more places. Did you know that up to 15% of the world’s population is infected with a group of fungi called dermatophytes? Some of the most common infections are jock itch, athlete’s feet and fungus of the toenails, ringworm is also common and frequently misdiagnosed by health care professionals. As naturopaths, we see many skin problems because the skin is so visible and nobody wants to be seen as having a skin issue. The “quick fix” is generally the norm, but it is not the best way to treat a skin infection if you are looking for a permanent result. Local treatments are what we call ‘suppressive” and only drive the condition back into the body. This particularly the case with ridiculous treatments on the skin which involve steroidal creams – the ultimate form of disease suppression.
Fungal Skin Infections Are Not New
Amazing but true, but fungus was actually the first microorganism shown to cause infectious skin lesions in human beings, so it’s been around with us for a very long time. Fungi have been around since life on earth began. Most health care professionals still limit their fungal treatments to topical (skin only). Unfortunately, and in my experience patients with fungal skin growths (if they do happen to be diagnosed correctly) are prescribed a fungal cream and offered no systemic (internal) treatment. The real causes are left and the condition remains and the problems only multiply for the patient. This local treatment may help somewhat locally, but it does NOTHING for the underlying fungal infection or causative factors which remain and the condition continues unabated. Mycologists (fungal specialists) are rare, even in large hospitals, and patients with fungal skin issues are treated locally at best.
Different Types Of Fungal Skin Infections
Although there are many different types of fungal yeasty skin infections, this article will have a focus on the five most easily recognised skin fungus infections. I have seen all these manifestations in my years with many hundreds of patients just like you – mums, dads, kids, teens and the elderly. Take a close look at the pictures, you may well recognise your skin condition here. Go to Google and enter the condition you think you have an do an “Image Search”, there you will find thousands of pictures of skin conditions. Sometimes Mr. Google has a better idea than your local family doctor when it comes to identifying skin complaints – but be sure to check the credibility of the website as many sites are very suspect and driven to sell a product.