Oral thrush is a type of yeast infection that effects your inner mouth cheeks and tongue. It appears as yellow in colour with being white in some cases. It's easily spottable when it appears at the tongue area and can be hard to spot when it grows on the inner cheeks of the mouth.Oral thrush is an infection and therefore it mostly affects people with weaker immune systems like toddlers and older people. More often than not it's not a serious issue and goes away with treatment. But, if left untreated it can cause serious health problems on even adults.
Since it's an infection, the first question that comes to mind is whether it is contagius or not. Oral thrush is contagius in a sense that it can be passed on to other people by kissing. If a person with this infection kisses someone else, the infection will travel on to the other person.It also should be noted that the infection can also affect other body parts. It really depends on where you are getting kissed. This infection creates a fungus in your body and that fungus can travel to other people via touch,kiss and even sexual intercourse.
WHAT CAUSES ORAL THRUSH?We all have a fungus type called C.Albicans in our mouth. It's perfectly normal to have a healthy,small amounts of Albicans and bacteries in the body. Our İmmune system protects us from these albicans. But, when the body’s immune system crushes, it becomes really hard for the bacterias to control the growth of the C. Albicans.When these fungus’s start to grow endlessly, yeast infections like oral thrush becomes apparent in the body. So, the overgrowth of the fungus type C.Albicans is responsible for the oral thrush. However, it should be noted that the stability/health of the immune system is the real problem.
Our body can control the C.Albicans and keep them in a healthy size/number. But taking certain medications affect the body’s immune system and compromises our health. Therefore, some type of treatment plans and drugs can be the indirect causes of this infection type. But, that's not all.A good amount of condition’s and disease’s also cause weaker immune system. Effects of these conditions and the treatment’s you take can very well cause system overload, all of these play a huge part in the overgrowth of the fungus. Some of these treatments and conditions are;
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF ORAL THRUSH?At first, you might not see any giveaways, but as the infection advances, you will start to notice some differences. Some of these are;
- A burning feeling at the inner cheeks and tongue
- White or yellow patches and bumps at the mouth
- Occasional bleeding on the bumps
- Skin deformation at lips
- Getting less taste from foods
- Bad breath
One or more of these symptoms might present themselves at different stages of oral thrush. The easiest way to understand this infection is to check the number 2 symptom on the list. If you have yellow and white bumps on your tongue and cheeks, you should call your doctor.
WHICH AGE GROUPS ARE IN DANGER?As we said before, oral thrush only affects people with immune system problems. Toddlers, kids and older people seem to get more affected from this infection compared to healthy adults. But, considering the contagius aspect of this infection, it's safe to say that even a healthy adult can get oral thrush from another person.
It also should be noted that the majority of the oral thrush cases in toddlers happen because of breastfeeding. The reason for that is, C. Albicans also cause yeast infections on breasts and nipples. This results in a vicious back and forth cycle between the baby and the mother.If the mother has a yeast infection and unknowingly breastfeeds the baby, the fungus passes down to the baby and results in oral thrush. After that, baby gives the same infection to its mother and delays the treatment. This is a very dangerous cycle that can very well result in other health problems.Compared to babys and toddlers, adults only seem to have this condition when they are already facing with a much bigger problem. Most of the time, oral thrush only happens when the patient takes a heavy medication that can weaken the immune system.
SEVERE CASES OF ORAL THRUSHIf your immune system is under huge amounts of stress and works in minumum, this gives the infection to travel to other body parts within your body. Without proper treatment, fungus might spread to your liver,heart and even brain. This invasive behaviour, much like cancer, can affect those body parts.Because of the fungus, infected bodyparts become less succesfull in doing their job. This creates an even bigger stress in the body and your organs try to achieve their tasks to their %100. All of this can cause a life threatening septic shock to occur in the body.
HOW TO PREVENT ORAL THRUSH?There are ways to reduce the risk of developing an oral thrush in the mouth. Some of these ways are;
- Practicing a good oral hygiene and visiting your dentist twice every year.
- If you have any symptoms go to your doctor immediatly and don’t waste time.
- Keeping your blood sugar levels in check.
- Having a nutritious diet and counting your macros.
- Don’t take excessive antibiotics.
- Do sports to improve your immune system.
- Eating lots of probiotic foods.
- Saltwater can slow down the thrush process.
- Mixture of water and lemon juice can also slow down the process.