Does Stress Cause Yeast Infection?

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

  • Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

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Ask the experts

Can stress cause a yeast infection?

Doctor's response

The term "yeast infection" most commonly refers to vaginal Candidiasis, an overgrowth of the fungi that normally live on all surfaces of the body. Vaginal Candidiasis is most commonly caused by antibiotic and steroid use that alters the normal microenvironment of the vagina and allows overgrowth of the fungi. Other conditions that interfere with the function of the body's immune system, such as diabetes, HIV, or cancer, can also predispose a woman to developing a vaginal yeast infection.

Severe or chronic stress is known to have a negative effect on the immune system and could plausibly increase the likelihood of getting a yeast infection. Additionally, there have been some studies which support the link between stress and vaginal yeast infections.

Robert Bargar, MD; Board Certification in Public Health & General Preventive Medicine

REFERENCE:

"Candida vulvovaginitis"
UpToDate.com


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Reviewed on 8/7/2017

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