Yeast infection in mouth or medically known as oral thrush is a condition caused by Candida fungus. This condition may spread to other parts, organs and structures of the body, such as the skin, the genitalia and the digestive tract. Although a certain amount of Candida fungus is normally present in the body, particularly in the mouth, skin and genitalia, an overgrowth of this fungus can lead to yeast infection. Good bacteria in the body control the fungus, but in some cases, the number of these good bacteria is reduced due to some conditions, thus leading to the overgrowth of the fungus.
The common trigger factors for yeast or Candida overgrowth include stress, certain health conditions like weak immune system, HIV/AIDS, cancer and diabetes, regular consumption of oral contraceptives, antibiotics and steroids and poor diet and hygiene. All these can boost the growth and multiplication of Candida or yeast in the body and this may result to an infection. Yeast infection can affect both men and women regardless of age, and although the condition can be easily treated using medications and home remedies, immediate diagnosis and treatment is still necessary to prevent further infection.
When infected by the fungus, the individual may or may not show symptoms of the infection, but when they do, these infections can be easily alleviated using topical creams and home remedies. However, there are cases when the symptoms are severe and this call for medical intervention, especially if it does not respond to any kind of treatment. Some of the most common symptoms of yeast infection in mouth include the following:
- Lesions may appear on and inside the mouth. These lesions are usually white and rose from the surface of the skin. In individuals with severe infection, these lesions may spread to other areas of the mouth, such as the inside part of the cheeks, tongue, tonsils, gum and behind the throat.
- The lesions due to oral yeast infection may bleed when irritated or brushed. Severe infection can cause the lesions to reach the esophagus, and this may result to difficult swallowing.
- Some individuals may also experience having fever during an infection. Also, there is a high risk that the infection may reach the lungs, liver and the skin.
How to treat yeast infection? The treatment for mouth yeast infection starts with a physical examination of the oral cavity. This can be followed by a microscopic examination of oral tissues or tissues obtained from the lesions. Once the results confirmed that yeast infection is present, immediate treatment will follow. The aim of the treatment is to kill the fungus, prevent the infection from spreading and recurring in the future.
The first line of treatment is the use of antifungal medications that can be obtained in the form of lozenges, tablets or syrup. Nystatin is one of the commonly used antifungal medications for oral yeast infection. These antifungal medicines are usually recommended by physicians to be consumed for two weeks in order to treat the infection completely. Candida fungus can also be due to an underlying disease that is why proper diagnosis should be conducted to determine the cause of the infection and apply the most suitable treatment for it.
In case the condition is due to diabetes, the first recommendation your physician can give you is to opt for medications that will help manage the levels of your blood sugar. This will help you prevent yeast infection in mouth from recurring. There are self-care methods that can also be suggested to prevent the recurrence of the condition and these methods are very easy to adopt so you will not have any trouble dealing with it.
One effective treatment for yeast infection in mouth is to avoid using mouthwashes and mouth sprays. Avoiding foods with high sugar contents and foods that contain yeast, such as wine and bread, is also necessary to prevent the condition. Applying yogurt to the affected area will also help relieve the infection due to Candida or yeast. Plain yogurt contains good bacteria, which are helpful in fighting off yeast and curing the infection in the process.
Garlic is also an effective remedy against oral thrush or mouth yeast infection. Garlic contains antifungal properties and is helpful in lowering blood pressure and in reducing the levels of bad cholesterol in the body. Alternatively, you can purchase garlic tablets from an herbal store if you cannot stand the taste or smell of raw garlic cloves. However, when opting for garlic tablets, make sure that it is all natural and it does not contain any artificial ingredients.
Learning how to cure yeast infection is your best defense against the recurrence of the condition. Proper hygiene should also be maintained to prevent yeast infection in mouth, so make sure to brush your teeth twice daily and consume lots of water every day. Water is helpful in washing out harmful toxins from the body, including the excessive amount of fungus within the system. For severe cases of yeast infection in mouth or oral thrush, medical intervention is necessary so consult your physician for more help.