Candida causes thrush and diaper rash
Candida is a yeast that can cause different types of infections in children. The three most common types of Candida infections are relatively benign and include: thrush, diaper and other skin rashes, and vaginal yeast infections. For children with weak immune systems, Candida can cause invasive and sometimes life-threatening disease. Candida albicans is the species most commonly associated with these infections, however multiple other species of Candida are becoming more significant. Candida is in normally found in the mouth, gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract, and the vagina. Candida infection occurs when the immune system is weakened in the area that is affected. For example, when skin in the diaper in area becomes irritated, Candida can invade the skin causing a rash. Many yeast infections will resolve without treatment, however anti-yeast medicines such as nystatin or ketoconazole may be used.
What is candidiasis?
Candidiasis is an infection caused by a species of the yeast Candida. In children with normal immune systems, the most common types of yeast infections are:
- Oral thrush
- Diaper and other skin rashes
- Vaginal yeast infection
What is thrush?
Thrush is a Candida infection of the mucous membranes of the mouth. This is most common in newborns and young infants. Thrush appears as white plaques on the tongue, roof of the mouth, and inside the cheeks. This is sometimes confused with milk debris left on the tongue of milk fed infants. Rarely, severe thrush can cause redness, swelling, pain, and ulcerations in the mouth, throat, and esophagus.
What does a Candida skin rash look like?
Candida skin infections prefer moist areas such as skin creases and that diaper area. A Candida skin infection begins as small red bumps that, when numerous, form larger red areas that may become raw and painful. This skin infection is typically found deep within skin creases. Other types of skin rashes such as eczema generally spare these areas. Another characteristic feature of this type of rash are small red bumps away from the edges of the main rash area. These are called satellite lesions.
What is a vaginal yeast infection?
A small amount of yeast is normally found in vaginal secretions however overgrowth of yeast in this area can cause inflammation. A vaginal yeast infection is characterized by a thick white, curd-like discharge. Also present are itching, burning, and painful urination. Yeast infections are more common in children who have received medications such as antibiotics or corticosteroids.
How is a Candida infection diagnosed?
The three most common types of Candida infection are diagnosed by physical exam.
Yeast can also be seen relatively easily under a microscope with special stains.
How is a Candida infection treated?
Oral medicines such as nystatin, clotrimazole, or fluconazole.
Diaper and other skin rashes
Creams and ointments containing anti-yeast medications such as nystatin, clotrimazole, or fluconazole.
Vaginal yeast infections
Either oral or vaginal medications which contain anti-yeast medications such as nystatin, clotrimazole, or fluconazole.
What are some of the potential problems of yeast infections in children with weak immune systems?
Nearly every body system and area can be infected with yeast when the immune system is not functioning properly. In severe cases this may be life-threatening.
Last Updated (Friday, 04 June 2010 20:11)