Talk about hitting a fellow when hes down - thats what happens with oral thrush.
Its favorite targets are newborn babies who are less than one month old, and adults whose immune systems have been compromised. This includes the elderly and cancer or HIV/AIDs patients.
Asthma sufferers who use inhaled corticosteroids may also fall victim to this toxic proliferation of oral yeast. People who are malnourished, those who already have an infection or diabetes mellitus, lifelong smokers, as well as those who have used antibiotics over an extended period are among those who are most susceptible to oral thrush.
As ominous as Candida albicans sounds, half of us have it - not just in the United States, but worldwide. Thats right, its just that common - part of the natural flora of our mouths. Whats not common, however is for this fungus to become pathogenic. It becomes toxic and makes people sick when theyre already defenseless.
Oral thrush may coat the tongue and look very much like curdled milk or cottage cheese. It can also create angry looking red lesions. And there may be some redness, soreness, and cracking at the corners of your mouth, as well as difficulty swallowing.
It can be painful and even cause fever in some sufferers. Often denture wearers may develop a condition described as denture stomatitis, which may be caused by Candida albicans.
While it is normally not contagious, a baby with a compromised immune system may contract it while playing with other babies, because, as we all know, they put everything into their mouths.
The good news is that as most babies mature, so do their immune systems, which means theyll be able to fight off excessive oral yeast growth, and build up a resistance to the subsequent infection it can cause.
It is suggested that nursing mothers swab their nipples with yogurt or distilled vinegar diluted with baking soda.
A balanced diet and consistent dental hygiene are reliable preventative measures. If you contract the disease, consider some home remedies that have been used successfully. For example, you might try swabbing the affected area with pure coconut oil. Drinking unsweetened cranberry juice or adding cinnamon to your food may help. And gargling with tea tree oil may also prove useful.
You should also adjust your diet to eliminate sugary foods. Even fresh or frozen fruits contain natural sugars that may feed the yeast. Wheat products, nuts, cheeses and other dairy products, deli meats, and acidic foods should be restricted until the condition is checked.
Click here to learn more about oral thrush.