Thrush

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Thrush:

Thrush is the result of an overgrowth of candida ablicans, a fungus that is part of the normal flora of the human body.  This overgrowth can be the result of a variety of circumstances, such as the utilization of medication, such as antibiotics or steroids.  It is also common in persons who have a compromised immune system, as seen in the elderly, those persons who are severely debilitated and those who suffer from AIDS. Those who suffer with thrush complain of a white growth on the surface of their tongue, often associated with soreness, especially when eating certain, specific foods - such as spicy food.  When the overgrowth is manually wiped off of the surface of the tongue, a raw, often bleeding surface is evident.  If this condition is chronic, it is often difficult to recognize.  In severe cases, this overgrowth can continue down the esophagus and can be life threatening to some persons, as in the patients who suffer AIDS. If a person suspects oral candidiasis (thrush), he/she should contact his/her physician for advice.  The evidence of this overgrowth, in and of itself, does not suggest a life threatening condition; however diagnosis and treatment certainly improves quality of life for the sufferer.  If the condition is persistent and chronic, a thorough medical examination is certainly in order to rule out serious medical problems.

Symptoms:

May or may not be raised -  white sore
Pain
Vaginal:  itching, pain, whitish discharge

Treatment: 
Very often physicians will prescribe antifungal   medication to be taken along with antibiotics that are known to encourage the overgrowth of candida.  (Many women have experienced vaginal yeast infections as a result of antibiotic therapy.  Oral thrush is very similar and responds to the same medications for cure.) A commonly prescribed medication is Nystatin (named after the folks who made the medication - the New York State Health Department - hence Nystatin.)  This medication is a liquid and is often swished in the mouth and either swallowed or spit out, however the MD prescribes.  It is important to noted that if the patient is wearing dentures, this medication is to be used with the dentures out.  Dentures, of themselves, encourage thrush.  Also, if being treated for thrush, the tooth brush should be changed often, as the yeast will get into the bristles and cause reinfection.  There are other prescribed medications and most doctors have those they prefer.  A non-prescription remedy is lactinex, which can be purchased at large pharmacies.  It is refrigerated, so the pharmacist will have to get it for you.  It can be purchased as a tablet or a powder that is mixed with liquid and swallowed.  I find the powder more effective. It is important to note, that treating ones self for thrush should be done cautiously if the condition is painful, chronic or is accompanied by other troublesome symptoms that might point to a serious medical condition.

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