Oral thrush is one type of yeast infection. This as the name indicates happen in the mouth, a location that is constantly moist and ideal for proliferation of the yeast. This condition which is quite common in the very young and elderly individuals can be remedied by proper treatment and control of diet.
Diet has an important role in many bodily activities including keeping the level of the immune status and in preventing overgrowth of yeast. So, regulation of diet plays a rolein preventing yeast infections. Apart from diet, the other factors that play a role in helping overgrowth of yeast include badly constructed dentures, antibiotics, oral contraceptives, iron deficiency, chemotherapy, pregnancy, endocrine problems, and any contributory skin problems.
Oral thrush is seen to form a white coating on the surface of the tongue and palate and sometimes on the inner portion of the lips and in the throat. It can sometimes take up a yellow color instead of white. Apart from this, the person is seen to have a craving for yeast products like bread, sugar or alcohol. This cannot be noted in young individuals as they cannot express their craving, but there are other ways to diagnose the condition.
Some other common symptoms that are usually seen are problems with digestion and fatigue. The most important symptom of yeast infection is a rash that could be found as an inflamed peeling patch on the area of the tongue or palate. There may also be presence of discolored excess tissue and cracking of the lips at the corners.
There may be some burning sensation associated that makes babies suffering from oral yeast infection very uncomfortable especially while nursing. This is added to the fact that they are not able to express their problem verbally to the others.
Babies usually contract the yeast infection at birth due to increased yeast proliferation in the vagina of the mother. It can also be spread from the mother to the baby due to the presence of infection below the mother’s breast or within the breast or on the nipples. It is also possible that the yeast infection can spread from any other person in the family or through a pet in the household although it is more common from the mother.
The diagnosis is confirmed by taking a scraping from the mouth or through a swab. While providing treatment both the mother and the child need care as the infection can again be spread from the mother if she is not treated and vice versa. There is also a high chance of developing resistance if the infection goes on recurring.
One biggest problem you might face if your baby is suffering from thrush is the difficulty in feeding as the infection could cause difficulty in swallowing. For this reason, the baby is likely to go hungry and cry a lot. He/ she will also suffer from disruption of sleep due to hunger. This could then result in other type of complications and the child might fall ill and remain very irritable. So, check your baby’s mouth for any white coating on the tongue or other areas of the mouth and see if it will go off when wiped with a moist cloth. If not, check with the pediatrician whether your child is suffering from oral thrush.