At some point of time, women are likely to get itchy rash under their breasts. This is not a matter of concern and will clear-up with little extra care and home remedies. Fungal rash under the breast does not occur due to negligence but it can occur due to autoimmune disorders. Fungus and bacteria thrive well in moist dark atmosphere like that of between your thighs, under your breasts and armpits. It can occur anywhere in the body but these sites are highly vulnerable for micro-organisms to live. It can be treated by personal hygiene and easy home remedies. In case it does not respond you can check with your GP.
Causes Of Fungal Infection Under The Breast :
Dark, moist and warm areas are ideal for any fungi to live. Fungus lives often in the outermost layers of the skin folds and women who are obese and have multiple folds of the skin are highly vulnerable for any skin infection. The skin cells on the outer layer die eventually to be replenished by fresh skin layer. Women with large size breasts and those who wear tight fitting bras are at increased risk of infection.
Fungi live on decayed skin cells on the upper layer and some kinds of fungi like dermatophytes have increased affinity for human skin. Fungi secrete certain enzymes that can dissolve the superficial skin protein facilitating easy penetration into the skin. Very often fungi would not get into the deeper layers and live only on superficial layers of the skin.
1. Yeast Infection
Sometimes yeast infection on the breasts can cause itchy skin rashes. Yeast can enter the skin through open sores or wounds or when the skin is torn. Candida infection can affect the groin, genital organs and breasts causing itchy rash.
2. Wearing Tight Fitting Bras
If there is no breathing space between the skin and the clothing it gives room for increased sweating. This can lead to any type of infection. Bacteria and fungi would love to live in the folds of the skin anywhere in the body. Breasts are regions that are fully covered, dark and moist and hence women wearing tight fitting bras are prone to develop fungal infection.
3. Repeated Scratching
Due to persistent itching under the breasts, it is likely one may indulge in scratching which can cause tiny tears in the skin. This can easily give room for fungi which can live in the micro-tears eating the dead skin cells.
4. Skin Problems
Women with pre-existing skin problems are eczema and psoriasis are more likely to develop fungal infection under the breasts than others. Obviously, there is increased chance for the infection from other places of the skin to spread till the breasts. Parasites can easily get transmitted through finger nails when a person scratches the skin and uses the same finger on the other site. If there is infection in the groin area then it can spread to the breasts.
Overweight and obese people are more likely to get fungal infection in the body. They have multiple folds on the body in many places like armpit, groin, between the thighs and under the breasts.
Signs and Symptoms :
Fungal infection under the breasts can easily be detected with the following signs :
- Persistent itching
- Peeling of skin under the breasts area
- In severe cases, skin gets reddened and dark
- Increased itchy feeling during the nighttime
- Foul smell under the breasts and on the clothing
It is necessary to get the fungal infection under the breasts treated failing which it can spread to several areas of the skin. Many people assume that itchy feeling will go off eventually but it is not so. Your health care provider can detect such infection by merely looking at the affected breasts.
Antifungal medications are given for treating fungal infection under the breasts. OTC creams and topical ointments that contain corticosteroid can be generously applied on the affected area during night. Very often fungi would die on application of suitable anti-fungal cream. Creams like Clotrimazole are effective in controlling the symptoms of itchy feeling.
In severe cases your doctor may prescribe antifungal pills like terbinafine or miconazole creams like Micatin or Monistat. He may give combination of both yeast and antifungal drugs also. Pills like Diflucan or terbinafine can give quick remedy.
You should follow the instructions of your doctor in completing the course of medication as prescribed. Even if symptoms have improved you should not discontinue the drugs. Infection may recur shortly on stopping the prescribed medication and schedule.
How To Prevent Fungal Infection ?
- Follow good skin hygiene
- Avoid wearing tight fitting bras
- Use only cotton brassiere that can absorb sweating and moisture quickly
- Keep the area dry and clean
- Change your undergarments twice daily
- Avoid using fabric softeners and other harsh detergents
- Do not share clothing with anyone
- After taking bath, gently wipe out excess of moisture from the body and spray antifungal powder liberally under the breasts
Other Home Remedies :
Add a cup of white vinegar solution in your bathtub and add 4-5 parts of water to it. Immerse your body for 10-15 minutes daily. Vinegar can control itchy feeling to large extent.