Oral Thrush Treatment
With proper medical treatment, most of the simple oral thrush infections can be effectively treated in about 2 weeks. But the symptoms may be more severe and difficult to manage in those with weakened immune systems.
The first step in oral thrush treatment is to stop the growth of the fungus, with antifungal medications, usually taken for a period of 7 to 14 days.
Treatments for Oral Thrush / Candidiasis
- The most common method of treating oral thrush is to use the antifungal medication in liquid form that should be swished around the mouth slowly, for as long as possible, and then swallowed. Lozenges / pastilles should be dissolved in the mouth slowly and should not be chewed or swallowed whole. The longer the medicine stays in direct contact with the surfaces of the mouth that are affected, the more effective it will be in fighting oral thrush.
- For mild cases, recommended antifungal medications include Nystatin (Mycostatin® liquid or pastilles) applied several times daily and Clotrimazole (Mycelex®).
- For more severe cases, if the infection has spread beyond the mouth or for patients with HIV/AIDS, oral thrush treatment may need higher doses or stronger medications, such as ketoconazole (Nizoral®) or fluconazole (Diflucan®). Fluconazole (Diflucan® ) is a synthetic antifungal agent which can be used for the treatment of a variety of Candida albicans infections.
- Diflucan is a single dose (daily) medicine in the form of tablets that must be swallowed. Studies on oral thrush treatments have demonstrated that it is just as effective as clotrimazole and nystatin, but is more convenient and better tolerated. Ketoconazole is less effective than fluconazole, but can be used as an alternative options if for any reason fluconazole cannot be used.
The next step, after treating the infection, is to identify and treat (if possible) the underlying health problems or conditions that caused the oral thrush, in order to prevent similar problems in the future.
Some antifungal medications used for oral thrush treatment may cause liver damage, or interact with other medications. Be sure to check with your doctor before taking any antifungal treatments.
Natural cures for oral thrush
Homeopathic remedies and alternative home remedies for oral thrush
Healthy persons may manage to treat an oral thrush outbreak without taking prescribed medications, following some alternative home remedies :
- Garlic is considered to have anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. Raw garlic or garlic capsules or tamplets from a health food store may help during an outbreak of thrush.
- Eating unsweetened yogurt or taking acidophilus capsules or liquid. Yogurt and acidophilus don't destroy the fungus, but they can help restore the normal bacterial flora in the mouth.
- Another alternative treatment for oral candidiasis is gentian violet . Gentian violet is a dye that can be found in some pharmacies, health food stores, and places where complementary/alternative therapies are sold. For oral thrush treatment, use a cotton swab, dipped in the dye, to coat the oral thrush patches in the mouth. Be careful when using Gentian violet as it can stain clothing.
Alternative oral candidiasis homeopathic remedies can provide in many cases a natural cure for oral thrush. Oral thrush home remedies have the same purpose as medical treatments, to restore the chemical balance in the mouth and to bring the unnatural growth of the Candida albicans under control.
If oral thrush home remedies are not effective, your doctor may prescribe an antifungal medication to fight the candida infection. Check with your doctor before trying any alternative treatments to ensure that they won't interact with other medications you're taking.
Prevention of Oral Candidiasis
The following practices can help minimize the chance of developing oral thrush:
- Adding unsweetened yogurt and more dairy products to the diet is an effective way for candidiasis prevention • Use of acidophilus tablets after taking antibiotics helps to re-establish a healthy balance of organisms in the mouth.
- Limit the consumption of sugar and alcohol as well as that of yeast-containing foods like bread, wine, and beer that encourage candida growth.
- Quit smoking
- Good oral hygiene practices can also help to prevent outbreaks of thrush.
- Visit the dentist regularly especially if you wear dentures or have diabetes.
- Do not over-use antibiotics. Use them only if prescribed by your doctor and at the recommended dosage.
- In patients with HIV, weak or suppressed immune system, or patients with frequent recurrent outbreaks of thrush, a doctor may recommend taking antifungal medication on a regular basis to prevent candida infections.
Even if oral thrush symptoms do not cause major discomfort to you, do not leave it untreated. Don’t ignore an outbreak of thrush and allow it to spread down your throat. Begin the oral thrush treatment as early as possible, to avoid the annoyance of the condition and the danger of it spreading and causing complications.
The cost involved with dental treatments can be significant and many patients may not afford it if they are not covered by their dental insurance. Learn how to choose a dental insurance plan that will provide the best dental treatment to yourself and your family.