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What do you need to know about home remedies for oral thrush?
If you notice white patches around the tongue, gums, or throat with a burning sensation and uncomfortable swallowing; be careful or these are the symptoms of oral thrush! It is a yeast infectious disease inside the mouth cavity caused by Candida albicans – a common type of fungus that takes responsibility for infections in many parts of human body.
Besides the prescribed medications, there is a wide range of natural remedies for the treatment and prevention of oral thrush, which are available in your kitchen!
In this article, Authority Remedies will aim to show you many excellent home remedies for oral thrush to help you overcome this stubborn problem as well as enjoy strong oral health.
What is Oral Thrush?
Oral thrush – or as known as the name of Oropharyngeal Candidiasis is the medical condition of your mouth including the tongue and the nearby tissues(gums, tonsils, and mouth). You are diagnosed with oral thrush if they are infected by the excessive growth of Candida Albicans – which take responsibility for many fungal infections in the human body. Once they gathered, they can expand into the roof of the gums, tonsils, mouth and even back of the throat.
The very first signs of oral thrush often include lesions around the mouth cavity such as creamy white damages, redness or bleeding. When it is not diagnosed and treated properly, this disease can get the immune system depressed, and even some further serious diseases.
This medical condition happens due to the weakening of your immune system which cannot fight against the outgrowth of the fungus.
In fact, in case you are diagnosed with oral thrush, antifungal medications are widely prescribed. However, in some patients, this prescription can lead to the damage in some organs (liver and kidney) and distract the estrogen levels. Besides, it can result in drug interactions, allergies, and negative reactions in some people. Generally, antifungal cream and medication can only alleviate the signs but can do nothing to improve the environment that allows the fungus to grow up.
On the other hand, there are few simple and effective home remedies for oral thrush which you might consider applying in order to relieve the pain as well as preventing oral thrush in case you are infected.
What causes Oral Thrush?
The major condition for oral thrush to occur is because of the weak immune system, and there are quite a few factors which partly contribute to a weak immunity such as:
- Ages: The infants and the elderlies are the dominant groups that experience a high risk of oral thrush. The immune system of babies is insufficient until they grow up, while that for the old people decrease through time.
- HIV/AIDS: The HIV which cause AIDS is in charge of damaging immunity cells, then allowing the body to be prone to other infections and diseases. The period during the 1980s marked a sharp increase of oral thrush incidence as the number of HIV/AIDS infection rose dramatically, along with the popularity of immunosuppressive drugs.
- Cancer: The chemotherapy and radiation from cancer treatment can significantly weaken your immune system and make you more vulnerable to infections such as oral thrush. According to a research in 2005, among patients with cancer treatments, 33% subjects were diagnosed with invasive candidiasis and fungus pathogens.
- Diabetes mellitus: It is when your diabetes is getting severe or uncontrollable, the increasing level of sugar in your saliva will create advantage environment for oral thrush to occur. It is apparent that the hyperglycemic environment of the body accelerate the imbalance of the immune system thus cause candida to develop.
- Vaginal yeast infection: It is caused by the same bacteria of oral thrush. Also in case you are pregnant and infected, your children will be more likely to get infected by the bacteria and develop oral thrush. Having a high number of sex partners is also a risk factor for vaginal infection and potential oral thrush for your infant.
- Medications: Some medication treatments may contribute to the weak immune system, for instance, birth control drugs, steroids, and antibiotics. They all break the balance between good and bad bacteria in the mouth and other organs and increase the risk of candida infection.
- Dentures: Using dentures allows sugars and bacteria to grow up inside the mouth cavity, especially if the patients have a medical history of diabetes or are under medical treatment. That is why people using dentures need to clean them carefully to prevent the attack of fungus and micro-organisms.
What are the symptoms of Oral Thrush?
Specifically, oral thrush can suddenly flourish, and its symptoms can get more noticeable and serious along with time. The symptom of this infection can be easily observed with these very first signs:
- Creamy-white lesions: Appeared slowly and the positions are often on the tongue and the inner side of your cheeks and lips. If the infection is not stopped promptly, it will spread throughout the whole inner side of your mouth and even down to the back of your throat.
Further symptoms for confirming the infection can be:
- Swelling, soreness with a burning sensation and unpleasant taste which affect swallowing ability.
- Fever: If the infection spreads to the esophagus or become more severe, the patients may suffer light to moderate fever, due to the severity of the disease.
- Symptoms in other organs (lung, liver, and skin): They are rarely observed as mostly occur in patients with an extremely low immune system, such as cancer or HIV.
This type of infection spares no one; however, common victims are infants and elderly people who have a weak immune system and especially people with dentures. In infected infants, besides the symptoms above, you may notice the nappy rash or their less frequency of feeding.
The infants receive the yeast infection from their mother. For example, a mother encountering with the vaginal yeast infection can transmit the fungus to her infant, making the baby accessible to oral thrush development. Infants contracting oral candidiasis can exhibit the signs of fussiness and irritability, causing them to get trouble in feeding.
As a woman’s breast is diagnosed with candida, the presence of reading itchy sensitive nipples, a dry areola, or abnormal pain between the breast and nipples becomes relatively high. This condition requires more than home remedies for oral thrush, as you may need to consult a doctor for medical prescriptions.
What are risk factors for thrush?
In fact, healthy people will not contract thrush without getting several risk factors. Do remember that adults who have weak immune systems are more prone to getting thrush. Dangerous factors linked with oral thrush consist of some of the following:
- Having an organ transplant
- Illnesses, such as poorly controlled diabetes, cancer, dry mouth or HIV/AIDS infection
- Poorly fitting dentures
Is oral thrush contagious?
Generally, physicians consider oral thrush as a non-contagious disease except for infant.
Candida albicans – the main cause of oral thrush – is available inside the mouth cavity and the throat as a natural inhabitant. It only multiplies and attacks the mouth tissues with the support of the imbalanced environment (when the immune system decrease due to various reasons). Occasionally, in patients who are consuming antibiotics and other medications that reduce the immune reaction, thrush has more chance to develop.
The only condition that allows thrush to transfer between people is when the infected infants contact with their mother when breastfeeding. The mother’s nipples will develop the symptoms of thrush with reddish, painful and cracking skin.
Vice versa, a mother with a yeast infection on the nipples can be the contagious source for her baby through direct contact. It is not until day 2-5 that the infant develops the symptoms of oral thrush as we mentioned above.
For the prevention and treatment of this fungal infection, please drag down to see which home remedies for oral thrush can you use at home!
When will you be diagnosed with oral thrush?
When coming to your doctor, he or she will check your mouth if there are any distinctive lesions, then use a device to shed the upper white layers lightly. A red and tender area should appear beneath, sometimes bleeding. Then the sample will be sent to the laboratory to perform a microscopic examination before your doctor can confirm his or her diagnosis.
Home Remedies for Oral Thrush
Here are the top 20 most effective home remedies for oral thrush which you can easily apply at home in order to remove oral thrush and prevent the bacteria from infecting you ever again.
Salt is considered one of the top home remedies for oral thrush as it helps to destroy the habitat of the fungus. Also, in case of infection, salt can reduce the symptoms and be a quick cure.
How to apply:
- Dilute ½ to 1 teaspoon of salt with 1 cup of warm water. Gargle using this water and repeat until the symptoms are reduced, and you feel comfortable.
- Use your fingers to gently apply some salt on your tongue and rub it for a few seconds. Then rinse your mouth using warm water. Repeat it twice every day for a couple of days.
Probiotic yogurt is said to be harboring an active type of lactobacilli which is effective as a natural treatment for oral thrush. Also, only use the type of plain or unsweetened yogurt for the best treatment of oral thrush.
Besides, other fermented foods that are high in probiotics are also beneficial for oral thrush as they boost the good bacteria and defeat the fungus. Those foods include kefir, fermented vegetables, and some kinds of soup.
How to apply:
- Consume 2 to 3 cups of yogurt every day for a couple of weeks.
- Use your finger to apply some yogurt onto your tongue and the inner side of your mouth and keep it for 5 to 10 minutes. Then rinse your mouth using warm water. Repeat it once or twice every day for a couple of days.
Garlic-the world’s healthiest food is best known as one of the best home remedies for oral thrush due to its anti-fungal capability which can help to destroy bacteria and yeast inside your mouth and further boosting up your immune system.
According to the Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy journal (2005), the study about garlic has shown promising result regarding the anti-fungal capability of extracted fresh garlic.
How to apply:
- Consume 2 to 3 cloves of garlic on a daily basis in order to ward off the infection. If you cannot take fresh garlic, then there is garlic concentrated into tablets or capsules but should be taken with care under doctor’s consultation.
- Garlic is also proven to be extremely effective against diseases related to oral health. You can find out more about it at Home Remedies for Blisters on Tongue.
The Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine has published the result of the study about the positive effects and curative impacts of cinnamon oil regarding treatment for oral thrush infection.
How to apply:
- Consume 1-2 cups of cinnamon tea on a daily basis. Firstly, boil half a teaspoon of cinnamon powder or simply a little cinnamon stick with one cup and a half of water for about 5 minutes. Filter and consume with or without lemon juice depending on your preference.
- Mix 2-3 drops of cinnamon essential oil with one tablespoon of olive oil or jojoba oil. Directly apply this solution onto the wounds and keep it there for 5 to 10 minutes then wash your mouth. Repeat this every day for a couple of days.
5. Coconut Oil
Another helpful and easy-to-find among the home remedies for oral thrush is coconut oil. It is very effective in eliminating the fungus and easing you from any uncomfortable symptoms.
According to the Journal of Medicinal Food (2007), researchers have found affirmative evidence about coconut oil regarding its active response to various kinds of Candida Albicans.
How to apply:
- Use a piece of cotton cloth to apply coconut oil directly onto the wounds. Repeat this procedure for a couple of times per day for about 6 to 7 days.
- On a daily morning basis, with an empty stomach, practice oil pulling with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Swirl the liquid inside your mouth for about 10 minutes then spit out. Wash your mouth with warm water and begin normal teeth brushing procedure. Practice this every day will give you excellent oral health.
6. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is said to provide enzymes that can fight the candida fungal and therefore is labeled as one of the top home remedies for oral thrush. Being vinegar, it is obvious that it will return the pH level back to balance in order to control the growth of candida fungal. Furthermore, vinegar is well known for its positive effect on the body’s immune system.
The Journal of Prosthodontics in 2014 has confirmed the anti-fungal capability of apple cider vinegar against numerous kinds of candida fungal.
How to apply:
- Dilute two teaspoons of raw apple cider vinegar together with a ½ teaspoon of salt into 1 cup of warm water. Rinse your mouth with this mixture a couple times per day until there are signs of betterment.
- Dilute 2 tablespoons of raw apple cider vinegar together with some raw honey into 1 cup of warm water. Drink this twice every day.
This household item is also extremely popular with many oral problems. For more information, please read Home Remedies for Loss of Smell and Taste.
7. Baking Soda
Baking soda is one of the cheapest home remedies for oral thrush and still remarkably effective. It can destroy the fungal that cause the oral thrush infection by balancing the environment inside the mouth cavity.
The Brazilian Oral Research in 2009 has announced that 5% sodium bicarbonate is a potential alternative option regarding treatment of oral thrush caused by Candida Albicans.
Similar to apple cider vinegar, this also helps to balance the acid level in your mouth.
How to apply:
- Use enough water with 1 to 2 teaspoon of baking soda in order to make a paste. Then use a cotton cloth to directly apply this paste onto the wounds. Keep it for a couple of minutes then rinse with warm water. Repeat this 2 to 3 times per day for a couple of days.
- Dilute half a teaspoon of baking soda into 1 glass of water and rinse your mouth using that. Repeat it twice every day until the infection is gone.
8. Black Walnut
Black walnut is famous for its tannin richness which contains strong astringent and anti-fungal capability.
Another ingredient of black walnut which is juglone has been proven to contain decent antibiotic and anti-fungal capability. With many positive properties, black walnut is among the top options as home remedies for oral thrush.
Besides the fruit, there are black walnut capsules or even extract in order to make the consumption more comfortable.
Apart from treating oral thrush, black walnut can help you alleviate symptoms of strep throat.
Cranberry is similar to black walnut as it also contains the “arbutin” which is a compound responsible for destroying the Candida Albicans and acknowledged as one of the most excellent home remedies for oral thrush.
How to apply:
- Consume the cranberry tablets daily according to directions, for children; fresh cranberry will be more suitable.
- Drink fresh and unsweetened cranberry juice for a couple of times every day. Keep doing for 2 to 3 weeks until the Candida fungus is eliminated.
10. Olive Leaf
The last remedy is olive leaf; however, last but not least, olive leaf is one of the most active and most effective home remedies for oral thrush due to its strong anti-fungal capability. Moreover, the ingredient “oleuropein” also play an important role as a powerful boost toward the immune system.
How to apply:
- Consume 250 to 500 mg of extracted olive leaf 3 times every day
- Also, there is olive leaf tea which can be made by steeping olive leaf into boiling water for about 15 minutes. Drink 2 to 3 cups of tea every day.
- Even when the infection is eliminated, you should keep drinking 1 to 2 cups of tea every day for preventing the Candida fungus from coming back.
11. Clove Oil
Clove Oil makes itself become one of the most trusted home remedies for oral thrush because of its anti-fungal properties. To reap one of the most incredible health benefits of clove oil, you need to pursue the following steps:
- Take clove oil and boiling water
- Mix some drops of clove oil with water to create a solution
- Drink the solution to wash your mouth with a view of alleviating thrush
12. Tea Tree Oil
Regarding herbal home remedies for oral thrush, tea tree oil is of great use. This is because it can serve wonder as a natural anti-fungal as well as the anti-bacterial agent that quickly treats the thrush in throat or mouth.
Additionally, this kind of oil is commonly applied to prevent vaginal thrush. All you need is to mix some drops of tea tree oil with a cup of warm water and consume it carefully to rinse your mouth. This treatment is believed to be successful if the application outnumbers three times per day.
13. Grapefruit Seed Extract
In fact, an extract from grapefruit seed that is loaded with anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties can support greatly the thrush treatment. This remedy can be used to prevent thrush in the infants as well as on the nipples and areole before and after feeding the babies. In order to take great advantages of grapefruit seeds, you can add ten drops of the extracted seed to an ounce of water and consume it two times daily.
Combine grapefruit seed extract and other home remedies for oral thrush will bring back an amazing result for your condition.
14. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is known as one of the excellent home remedies for oral thrush because of its gel that creates a coating surrounding the fungus as well as mouth and thereby damaging the movement and expansion of the fungus causing thrush. Thanks to its cooling effects, aloe vera is also beneficial for easing both itching and discomfort.
How to apply:
- Prepare an aloe vera leaf and extract its gel
- Rub the gel on the patches in the mouth
- Repeat the treatment as needed
15. Homemade Smoothie
The smoothie that can be prepared and cooked at home can help greatly with oral thrush prevention. The instruction is shown below:
- Prepare several chop cucumbers, some avocados, a celery stick, parsley, 8 basic leaves and about 2 teaspoons of lemon juice with some black salt and black pepper
- Blend all the above ingredients in 200-250 ml of filtered water
- Drink half of this smoothie in the morning, especially before the breakfast
- Consume the rest at lunchtime
Using this smoothie, combining with those home remedies for oral thrush mentioned above, is an effective way to defeat this fungal infection.
16. Lavender Oil
One of the most impressive health benefits of lavender oil is to treat oral thrush. Besides its conventional benefit as a fabulous aromatherapy, ancient people used it for many health-related purposes due to the excellent antifungal properties.
The reason why lavender oil is one of the best home remedies for oral thrush lays on its popularity, effectiveness, and the least side effects recorded.
You can simply add 2 drops of lavender oil to your toothpaste when brushing teeth in the morning.
17. Flax Seeds
Considered high in omega 3 fatty acids, one of the nutrition facts of flax seeds are an extremely natural immunity booster; therefore, using them as an effective treatment for oral thrush can achieve your goal. Flax seeds are shown to be potential for curing fungal and bacterial infections of the body. You can drink one teaspoon of flax oil per day or digest half of a teaspoon of flax seeds to aid in fungus reduction in a natural way.
18. Boric Acid
Since containing anti-fungal properties, boric acid is another favorable answer on how to get rid of oral thrush. It is mainly used to cure oral thrush in adults. Regarding the application, make sure that you do not swallow it since it can lead to upset stomach and pregnant women are not allowed to take this remedy.
How to apply:
- Prepare a quarter teaspoon of boric acid
- Add it to a glass of water
- Wash your mouth off with it
19. Warm Water
Basically, the fungus is unable to live in warm or hot environments and therefore, drinking warm water can be applied for flushing out the fungus in the mouth. You can opt for warm or hot water and use one of them to wash and swish your mouth a few times per day.
Drinking warm water per day can help treat many other oral-related treatments such as a dry cough or a sore throat. It is considered one of the simplest but effective home remedies for oral thrush that you could find in your kitchen.
20. Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide can aid in eliminating the infection leading to fungus. All you need is to wash your mouth with about 2% of hydrogen peroxide mixture that is diluted in water.
Which food should you avoid
- Any foods that create an acidic environment should be avoided, such as the ones that contain a high amount of carbohydrates, including fruit and natural sources of sugars.
- According to the Journal of Reproductive Medicine, reducing the consumption of sugary foods creates a positive impact on the reduction of both incidence and the severity of candida infection.
- Drinks and foods which are high in alcohol should also be avoided as they decrease the immune system in general.
How to prevent oral thrush
- Exercise hygienic procedure for oral part every day such as brush the teeth twice; floss once and never use a shared toothbrush.
- Use a soft cotton cloth or tongue scraper to clean the tongue.
- Change toothbrush regularly
- For people using dentures, do not wear to sleep and keep in denture cleaning liquid overnight. Use clean toothbrush and water for denture cleaning.
- People with diabetes need to monitor the sugar level to prevent infection
- Watch the consumption of sugar to limit the growth of fungus
- While having the infection, stop smoking or it will get worse
- Drink cool or ice water to ease the discomfort
- Gargle some of the home remedies for oral thrush that mentioned above
- During the infection, consume food which is easy to chew and swallow
- People need to go to the dentists regularly, especially people with diabetes and dentures.
- Oral thrush is caused by the overgrowth of Candida albicans inside the mouth cavity.
- Oral thrush is non-contagious in adults, but it can transfer between mothers and infants easily through breastfeeding.
- Using home remedies for oral thrush is very efficient for the prevention and treatment of this disease.
- Maintaining a healthy lifestyle helps boost the immune system to defeat Candida infection.
- So, that is everything you need to know about oral thrush and the natural treatments for this disease. Why don’t you go to the nearest grocery store and try some of the home remedies for oral thrush? Maybe you will be amazed at what benefits these methods can bring back!
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