What is Oral Thrush?
Oral Thrush, also called Oral Candidiasis in medical terminology is a candida yeast infection of the mouth that leads to the development of white or creamy raised spots on the surface of the tongue or inner cheeks. The disease is more common in infants but can also affect adults.
The disease is usually minor and painless in case of healthy individuals. Nonetheless, it can be serious and quite painful in more severe cases in which it tend to spread to other areas as well.
Factors like maintaining proper oral hygiene and restricting the consumption of sugars and yeast containing foods play an important role in preventing Oral Thrush to a great extent.
This troublesome though temporary infection is not contagious in nature. Hence, it can be treated with the help of a number of therapeutic home remedies for Oral Thrush natural treatment. The disease tends to be more severe and thus difficult to control in case of individuals with weak immunity.
Causes of Oral Thrush
Oral Thrush is caused by infection due to Candida Albicans yeast. This Candida fungus is normally already present in the oral cavity and the digestive tract.
The immune system helps control the normal balance of these fungi in the body. But, when the immune system is weakened, it fails to check the over growth of these micro organisms thereby resulting in Thrush.
Conditions affecting the functioning of the immune system such as Diabetes, AIDS, hormonal changes, smoking, dry mouth, use of certain medications like antibiotics, corticosteroids, birth control pills, chemotherapy or radiotherapy treatment etc tend to increase the risk of developing this frustrating disease.
Moreover, using ill fitting dentures may also increase the chances of developing this disease by causing breaks in the mucus membranes. Newborn babies are more susceptible to Oral Thrush because of their under developed immune systems. Babies may pass the infection to their mothers while breastfeeding. The same yeast that causes Oral Thrush also tends to cause Diaper Rash in infants.
Symptoms of Oral Thrush
The most important symptom of Oral Thrush is the presence of white, cream or yellow colored lesions or raised spots on the lining of the mouth. These lesions tend to be painful and may even bleed on scraping.
However, mild Oral Thrush is usually painless. Other symptoms like cracking at the corners of the mouth, loss of taste, a cottony feeling in the mouth difficulty swallowing may also be present.
The infection usually affects the tongue, inner cheeks, gums, tonsils, esophagus, back of the throat, roof of the mouth or other mucus membranes in the oral cavity. In severe cases, the disease may also spread to the skin, liver and lungs and may be accompanied by fever.
Natural Home Remedies for Oral Thrush
• Pure, unrefined coconut oil works as one of the most successful natural home remedies for Oral Thrush in babies as well as adults.
Simply swish half or one teaspoon of this oil around in the mouth for about 10 to 15 minutes to cure Oral Thrush naturally at home. Regular of this home remedy is sure to give encouraging results.
• Similarly swishing saline solution around the mouth also helps in healing this disease effectively. To prepare this saline solution, dissolve half a teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water. A solution of apple cider vinegar and warm water can also be used in the same way as an efficient natural remedy for Oral Thrush in adults.
• Oregano oil, clove oil and tea tree oil serve as excellent Oral Thrush home remedies. However, as these natural antifungal oils are quite strong, they should be used in combination with coconut oil or any other carrier oil to get rid of this problem.
Breastfeeding mothers can apply any of these oils in combination with a carrier oil to help avoid spreading the disease to the babies. Applying a paste of plantain seeds (soaked in water overnight) is also beneficial in this regard.
• Another simple yet valuable Oral Thrush natural remdy is swishing plain yogurt in the mouth. Follow this home treatment a few times per day on a regular basis to provide relief from this painful disease.
Diet for Oral Thrush
Including onion, garlic, yogurt, coconut, coconut milk and buttermilk in the diet is one of the most highly recommended natural home remedies for Oral Thrush. The natural anti microbial properties of these foods are useful in reducing this problem effectively. Grapefruit seed extract is also beneficial in this regard.
In addition, include more vitamin A, vitamin B complex, vitamin C, iron and zinc rich foods in the diet to facilitate the healing process. Besides, avoid smoking and maintain adequate oral hygiene on a regular basis to help avoid Oral Thrush.