Thrush is an infection of the mouth caused by the candida fungus, commonly known as yeast.

It frequently affects the mouth and results in white patches inside the mouth, on the gums and the tongue.

Painful scratches and open red lesions can develop under these curd-like white patches.

Candida infection is not constrained to the mouth; it can also crop up in other parts of the body, leading to vaginal yeast infections in women or diaper rashes in infants.

An overproduction of a specific type of fungi, called as candida Albicans, can cause an infection known as oral thrush.

The fact you should know is that Thrush can affect any common person. Although, it usually affects babies and toddlers, elder adults, and people with destabilised immune systems.

You can get rid of thrush by using some of the effective home remedies.

Let’s read about them.

What Is Oral Thrush and Candida?

Medically known as oropharyngeal candidiasis, oral thrush develops inside the mouth and on the tongue. It is a yeast infection which forms a layer of white, foamy spots on the tongue and the cheeks.

A weak immune system or excess intake of antibiotics kills the healthy bacteria in the mouth, and hence the infection spreads.

Anybody can suffer from thrush, but newborn babies and elderly people are most prone to it. But, thrush in infants is not harmful usually.

People suffering from cancer, diabetes and vaginal infection also have the chances of developing thrush.

The appearance of thrush indicates an immune deficiency. Maintaining proper oral hygiene and healthy diet, along with proper rest is very important in the cases of thrush.

What Causes Thrush?

Candida fungus is normally kept in restraint by other bacteria and microorganisms in the body. Nevertheless, several illnesses, stress, or medications can disrupt the gentle balance, causing the fungus candida to propagate out of control and causing thrush.

  • Weak immune system
  • Pregnancy
  • Medications
  • People who wear Dentures
  • Smoking
  • Consuming birth control pills
  • Improper technique of using the inhalers for asthma
  • Lack of nutritious diet
  • Illness
  • Lack of proper sleep and rest
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Overuse of antibiotics
  • Stress
  • Corticosteroids
  • Antibiotics
  • HIV infection
  • Cancer
  • Dry mouth

Babies can circulate the infection to their mothers during breastfeeding.

What Are The Symptoms Of Thrush?

Thrush builds up all of a sudden, but it may become continual, staying over a long period.

There is any presence of creamy white, slightly raised wounds in your mouth  often on your tongue or inner cheeks

White patches on the roof of your mouth, gums, tonsils, or even back of your throat, then it’s likely a sign of thrush.

  • Pain or difficulty swallowing in the mouth or the throat
  • A feeling that food gets stuck in your throat or mid-chest area
  • Fever, if the infection spreads beyond the oesophagus.
  • Pain in the mouth.
  • Loss of taste.
  • Redness of the gums.
  • A cottony feeling in the mouth.
  • In infants, the tongue becomes furry and white.
  • The tongues and gums of the babies may show ulcers.
  • Infants will drool much more than normal, accompanied by high fever.
  • Foul mouth and bad breath in both adults and infants.
  • The wounds, similar to that of ‘cottage cheese’, can be sore and may bleed faintly when you scratch them or brush your teeth.

Thrush can spread to other parts of the body, including the lungs, liver, and skin.

This happens more often in people with cancer, HIV, or other conditions that weaken the immune system.

How Is Thrush Diagnosed?

Now, those were simple tips of how you can get rid of thrush by following simple steps at home.

But what would happen if you visit your dentist for the same?

Yes, MavCure has even gathered this information for you. Firstly, know that your dentist can diagnose thrush by examining your mouth. They would look for the individual white wounds on your mouth, tongue, or cheeks. Smoothly brushing the wounds away exposes a reddened, gentle area that may bleed slightly.

To confirm the diagnosis, a microscopic examination of tissue from a wound would be done.

You already know that Thrush can extend into your oesophagus. Such situations may require you to take other tests to accomplish the diagnosis. Such tests might include:

  • Taking a throat culture by swabbing the back of your throat with sterile cotton and studying the microorganisms under a microscope.
  • Performing an endoscopy of your oesophagus, stomach, and small intestine — examining the lining of these body areas with a lighted camera mounted on the tip of a tube passed through these areas)
  • Taking X-rays of your oesophagus.

Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Oral Thrush

What if I tell you that you can get rid of oral thrush by just sitting at your home?

Below, is the list of the simple home remedies for getting rid of oral thrush, which applied properly, will give fantastic results.

1. Black Walnut:

Black Walnuts To Treat Thrush
Black Walnuts To Treat Thrush

The very first natural and easiest home remedy is to use black walnut. This is because Black walnut bark is very rich in tannin which consists of powerful astringent and antifungal properties.

Additionally, it also contains juglone – an active ingredient, which has been revealed and verified to have moderate antibiotic and antifungal effects. You can get black walnut extract to treat oral thrush in infants at home.

Black walnut has the capacity to cure oral thrush naturally.

  • Take black walnut capsules for 2-3 weeks. You can also add black walnut supplements to your diet.

2. Cranberry To Getting Rid Of Thrush In The Mouth

Cranberry Juice To Get Rid Of Oral Thrush
Cranberry Juice To Get Rid Of Oral Thrush

The Cranberries consists of “arbutin,” a compound that can help to kill Candida albicans efficiently.

Cranberry one among the best remedies for oral thrush.

  • Drink a glass of unsweetened and fresh cranberry juice 2-3 times daily. Repeat this for about 3 weeks to see positive effects.
  • Consume cranberry capsules 2-3 times every day.
  • Children can be given fresh cranberries.

3. Cinnamon:

cinnamon
Cinnamon

Cinnamon has been successfully proven to be constructive in the fight against thrush in the mouth and Candida Albicans.

The credit goes to its powerful antiparasitic, antifungal, and antibacterial properties. This can reduce the severity of the infection.

Hence, you should consume more cinnamon on a regular diet.

  • Consume cinnamon tea every day.
  • Sprinkle it on your French toast.
  • Add it to your yoghurt.
  • Consuming cinnamon tea daily also reduces the symptoms. Boil ½ tsp. of cinnamon powder in 1 ½ cup of water for a few minutes. Strain and add 2-3 drops of lemon juice in it and drink.
  • Mix a few drops of cinnamon oil in 1 tablespoon of raw olive oil. Apply this oil directly on the white creamy patches in the mouth and leave it for 10-15 minutes. Repeat this once every day.

Please note, Cinnamon should be avoided during pregnancy.

4. Oil Pulling:

Oil Pulling To Treat Thrush
Oil Pulling To Treat Thrush

You must be wondering what Oil Pulling is. Well, let me brief you the process or more likely the technique of Oil Pulling.

Firstly, Brush your teeth keeping in my mind to Oil pull on an empty stomach if at all possible.

  • Then, take one tablespoon of oil and rinse it around in your mouth for some time, say 5-10 minutes.

Ensure it coats every possible part of your mouth which includes the area under your tongue, in your gums, the roof of your mouth. After 5 to 10 minutes, spit the oil out and gargle with salt water.

  • Use coconut oil for best results, as it is believed to be effective in fighting fungi. Olive oil can also be one of the options.

However, Oil pulling is used because it is supposed that oils pull toxins out of your system. Anyways, the results haven’t been certain, yet, many people use oil pulling to fight the Candida fungus and to gain temporary relief.

5. Take Thyme:

Thyme For Treating Thrush
Thyme For Treating Thrush

The herb thyme is believed to be a useful aid in getting rid of oral thrush, although science has yet to authenticate it.

Did you know that in Europe, thyme is used to treat upper respiratory conditions and thrush as well?

Yes, Thyme is often used to treat Thrush. So, why not try it?

  • Try sprinkling a moderate amount of thyme on any dish you take.

6. Use Apple Cider Vinegar:

Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar

Vinegar is thought to fight off intestinal yeast overgrowth that sometimes contributes to oral thrush. Apple cider vinegar forms a strong defence against the infection causing yeast.

It also brings the pH level of the mouth to a stage where the overgrowth of the fungi can be controlled. It contains certain enzymes that fight candida infections.

  • Just take a little bit of apple cider vinegar, dilute it with about a half part of distilled water, and rinse it in your mouth for few minutes.
  • You can also mix one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a full 8 ounces of water and drink before every meal.
  • Mix 2 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and the little honey with  a cup of warm water. Drink this 2-3 times daily.
  • Mix 2 tsp. of raw apple cider vinegar and ½ tsp. of table salt in a cup of warm water. Rinse your mouth with this solution a few times daily.

7. Eat More Garlic:

Eat more garlic
Eat more garlic

Garlic is one among the major fighters of many fungi, including thrush. Try more of Fresh garlic in your diet as it works better than garlic pills. This is among the best antiviral herb that is known to us.

Garlic is very effective in treating oral problems as it has antifungal properties. It can boost up your immunity by killing the yeast in the mouth.

  • For best results, try taking 4 to 5 crushed cloves of garlic per day. I know you must be worried about unpleasant garlic breath. Don’t worry, just make sure that you drink 3 to 4 cups of garlic tea daily which will do the job.
  • Apply garlic oil on the white patches or dots daily for a few minutes.
  • Chew 2-3 buds of garlic regularly.
  • You can also take garlic capsules on your doctor’s recommendation.

8. Use Tea Tree Oil:

Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil

Tee Tree Oil is prominent for its varied Antifungal and antibacterial properties and is also a common home remedy for almost everything from acne to athlete’s foot.

Tea tree oil has anti-fungal properties that reduce the yeast growth in the mouth. It helps in quick healing after the infection.

No wonder, it’s also used for thrush.

  • Dilute one or two drops of tea tree oil into a tablespoon of distilled water, insert your fingertip and pat onto wounds inside the mouth.

Later, gargle mouth with salt water.

  • Add a few drops of tea tree oil in a cup of warm water. Gargle with this solution twice daily.

Do not consume the oil as it can cause certain side-effects.

9. Salt

Sea Salt
Sea Salt

It is considered as the best home remedy for thrush. Salt relieves the thrush symptoms quickly by creating an uninhabitable environment for the fungus to grow.

  • Take 1 tsp. of salt and mix it in 1 cup of lukewarm water. Gargle and rinse your mouth a few times daily with this solution.
  • Take a pinch of salt and apply it on the tongue and inner cheeks. Rub it gently for a few minutes and then rinse thoroughly.

The main importance of these home remedies is you can follow them from the comfort of your home and be limited to a kitchen or even your room.

10. Yogurt

Yoghurt
Yoghurt

Yoghurt can be very helpful in treating yeast infections. It contains active lactobacilli, a kind of bacteria, which fight thrush. It is also good for digestion.

  • Consume 2 cups of unsweetened yoghurt every day for a few weeks.
  • Take some unsweetened yoghurt and rub it on your tongue and inner cheeks gently for a few minutes daily and then rinse your mouth.

11. Baking Soda

Baking Soda
Baking Soda

This is a very reasonable home remedy to kill the infection causing yeast. Baking soda also maintains the pH level of the saliva in the mouth.

  • Mix ½ tsp. of baking soda in a glass of water. Rinse your mouth with this solution 2-3 times daily.
  • Mix 1 tsp. of baking soda with a few drops of water to form a paste. Then apply this paste on your tongue and inner mouth directly or by using a cotton ball. Leave it for a few minutes and then rinse your mouth with lukewarm water. Repeat this twice daily to get rid of the infection.

12. Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil
Coconut Oil

Coconut oil fights all kinds of oral infections and also reduces the uneasiness caused due to the action of the fungi.

  • Dab a cotton ball in extra virgin coconut oil and apply it on the inner parts of the mouth. Repeat this 3-4 times in a week.
  • Take 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and perform oil pulling by swishing the oil inside the mouth for 10 minutes. Rinse your mouth and brush your teeth. Repeat this every morning and on an empty stomach.

13. Olive Leaf

Olive destroys the yeast that has caused the mouth infection due its much known antifungal properties. It contains oleuropein that can improve the immune system.

  • Make olive leaf tea by steeping 1-2 tsp. of olive leaves in boiling water for about 10 minutes. Strain and drink it.
  • Consume olive leaf extract thrice daily. Consult your doctor for the amount of the dosage.

14. Oregano Oil

The antifungal properties of this oil work very effectively against candida Albicans. Oregano oil inhibits the growth of the infection-causing microorganisms. It also improves the body’s immunity.

  • Mix 3 drops of oregano oil in a glass of water. Drink it 2 times daily. Repeat this for a few weeks
  • Mix 3 drops of oregano oil in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Apply this mixture directly on the white patches and leave for about 10 minutes. Rinse with warm water. Repeat this twice daily and continue for a few weeks.

15. Watermelon

Watermelon
Watermelon

This is considered as one of the best home remedies for treating the oral thrush. All you need is watermelon rind.

  • Take about 30g of watermelon rind and burn it into the coal with 3 mothballs. Take appropriate amount of honey and mix all these together. Store it in an airtight bottle for multiple uses.
  • Dab a cotton ball into this mixture and apply it on the tongue and inner parts of the mouth. Do this 3-4 times daily.

16. Herbal Green Tea

Herbal Green Tea
Herbal Green Tea

Green tea is extremely helpful in treating oral thrush. It is good for treating the furry tongue in infants.

  • Boil a few green tea leaves with a pinch of salt in water. Let the solution cool down and then dab a soft cloth in it and wipe the tongue.
  • It is not suitable for babies under 6 months.

17. Tropical Asparagus

It is also known as souropods androgynous. It is very beneficial for treating oral thrush in babies.

  • Wash a handful of the tropical asparagus with cool boiled water. Then with the help of a mortar, mill it. Dab a cloth in this juice and wipe the baby’s tongue with it.

18. Boric Acid

Boric acid is a good remedy for treating thrush problems. But it is an acid, so proper care should be taken to see that it is not consumed. It can cause stomach upset if ingested.

  • Take ¼ tsp. of boric acid and mix it in a cup of water. Use this as a mouthwash twice daily. Repeat it for a few weeks.

19. Herbs

Herbs have found to possess certain properties that can kill the infection causing fungi. They also boost the immunity.

  • Mix tincture in water and use it as a mouthwash 3-4 times daily. This tincture should contain equal amounts of Echinacea, myrrh and Plantain

20. Plantain

Plantain has the capacity to reduce the infection and the soreness. It is a helpful home remedy.

Take plantain seeds and soak them in water overnight so that they swell up. This will give you a gel-like substance.

Apply this as a layer on the white patches in the mouth and leave for about 20 minutes. Repeat this twice on a daily basis.

21. Goldenseal Paste

Goldenseal fights the fungal infections. Thus, the severity of oral thrush is reduced.

  • Apply ½ tsp. of goldenseal powder directly on the white patches. Leave for about 30 minutes and then rinse with warm water.
  • Add a few drops of water to 1 tsp. of goldenseal powder to form a paste. Apply it on the infected parts of the mouth and leave for 30 minutes. Then rinse with warm water. Repeat this once on a daily basis.

22. Milk and Castor Oil

This is a good remedy to get away from the negative impacts and symptoms of thrush. This tip will also keep your mouth and lips moisturised.

  • Add 1 tsp. of castor oil in a glass of warm milk. Drink every day for a few weeks.

23. Grapefruit Seed Extract

This is a simple home remedy. Grapefruit has properties that can fight against fungi, bacteria, parasites and viruses.

  • Take 30ml of distilled water and add 10-12 drops of grapefruit seed extract in it. Take a cotton ball and dip it in this mixture. Apply it on the white patches every hour. Repeat this for 2-3 days. It is very effective in infants.

Seek a Doctor

Well, healthy children and adults can be effectively treated for thrush.

A general prescription for Thrush includes Antifungal medications, in the form of tablets or lozenges or liquids, which are commonly taken for about 10 to 14 days.

But always do remember that your dentist will have a precise treatment approach designed for you based on your age and the cause of the infection which will suit you the best.

As we already read that the presence of Candida infection can be a probable symptom of other medical problems as well, your dentist may suggest you to seek care from a medical doctor too, so that any other causal health problems can be treated before it’s too late.

What Are the Preventive Measures?

Preventive measures, perhaps, the most important thing you should know. None of us would want to go through the same pain again.

The best way to stay away from it is by taking preventative measures to keep oral thrush from returning. This includes:

  • Brushing your teeth twice or thrice a day.
  • Having a thrush outbreak?
  • Then replace your toothbrush now and then.
  • Ensure that you floss your teeth at least once a day.

Are you a smoker?

Then, it’s time you get rid of this bad habit as soon as possible. Concern your dentist for more particular tips on how to get away with smoking.

Products such as mouthwash, breath sprays or breath mints tend to upset the normal microorganism balance in your mouth which might lead to damage the good bacteria in your mouth and pave a path for bad bacteria to take over. Hence, avoid using them as much as possible.

Do you wear dentures or have diabetes?

Then it is a must to visit your dentist at least twice a year.You very well know that foods such as bread, beer, and wine encourage candida growth.

So, it is advisable to bound the amount of sugar and yeast-containing foods you consume.

What Diet You Should Follow?

After going through ways to get rid of thrush and preventing measure, it’s time to consider what diet to follow when you are suffering from oral thrush.

It is recommended by many practitioners to follow a healthy diet to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria any further while suffering from oral thrush. To avoid the overgrowth of harmful oral bacteria leading to oral thrush, one should refrain themselves from consuming sugars.

Diet Tips, What To Avoid?

  • Grains And Gluten Rich Food Items

Food items made from wheat, barley, rye or oats. Example: pasta, white bread etc. Corn and its by-products are usually contaminated by the mould. Example: popcorn.

  • Sugary Food Items

Sugar, syrups, honey, rice syrup, pudding, ice cream, pastries, cookies, chocolate, candies, or other desserts have very high sugar content. Artificial sweeteners are also unhealthy. Say no to soft drinks.

  • Alcoholic Beverages

Wine, beer, spirits, cider and liquors can raise the sugar level in the blood and also affect the immunity system.

  • Dairy products

Milk, cream, cheese as they contain lactose.Dairy products except ghee, butter and yoghurt should be avoided.

  • Meat And Fish

All kinds of pork products, and processed, cured, vacuumed and smoked meats should be avoided.All fish and shellfish except wild salmon and sardines are to be avoided.

  • Fruits

Avoid fruits altogether, including dried or canned fruits, and fruit juices. Lemon can be included in the diet sometimes.

  • Vegetables

Avoid potatoes, carrots, beetroots, peas, and sweet potatoes.Small portions can be eaten once in a while.

  • Nuts

Avoid cashews, pistachios and peanuts. They can increase the inflammation due to oral thrush.

  • Beans

Legumes and beans, tofu products, and all soy products shouldn’t be added to your cart.

  • Condiments

Avoid adding ketchup, mayonnaise, relish, mustard, soy sauce etc. to your sandwiches.

  • Beverages

Soft drinks, energy drinks, fruit drinks, herbal teas and coffee should be avoided.

  • Mushroom And Vinegar Products Should To Be Avoided

All other food items except the ones mentioned above can be included in your diet.

The food items given below are what people with oral thrush should avoid getting quicker remedial process from it.

  • Soybean or other soy products, such as soy nuts, soymilk, tofu.
  • Acidic foods like Pista, vinegar, peanut butter as well as peanuts.
  • Foods made from flour or wheat.
  • Eggs, Milk and dairy products such as sour cream, frozen yoghurt, and cottage cheese.
  • Meat varieties, such as hot dogs, sausage, pork, veal, and beef.
  • Caffeinated beverages, such as sodas, hot chocolate, tea, and coffee.
  • Seafood and shellfish varieties.
  • Foods that contain high levels of preservatives and additives.
  • Condiments such as mayonnaise, salad dressing, teriyaki, barbeque or steak sauce, soy sauce, and ketchup.

Also, remember to keep your sweet tooth under control by avoiding consuming too much of sweets or foods that contain high sugars.

This will not only prevent the thrush but also help you lead a more content and serene life.

TIPS:

  • Maintain your oral health. Brush twice a day and floss at least once daily.
  • Never share your toothbrush and change it every 3 months.
  • Reduce the sugary items in your diet.
  • Quit or at least reduce smoking.
  • Drink cool water or suck on ice cubes to lessen the uneasiness.
  • Remove your dentures before sleeping. Soak them in water overnight. Clean your dentures regularly.
  • If you are a patient of diabetes, maintain the blood sugar level by checking it once every few days.
  • Consume foods that take less effort to swallow, like custard.
  • Use cotton or tongue cleaner to cleanse your tongue regularly.
  • In a case of infants, use hot water to clean the bottles and nipples. Apply lanolin lotion after breastfeeding to avoid the chances of yeast infection.
  • While breastfeeding, use nursing pads if you are suffering from the fungal infection. This will not let the infection spread to the baby.
  • Use antifungal mouthwashes. You can make one at home mixing water and a pinch of salt with some cider vinegar. Rinse your mouth after swishing it for a few minutes.
  • Eat a healthy and a balanced diet to make the immune system strong. Include yoghurt, garlic and onions in your meals.
  • Proper sleep and exercise is also a must along with a healthy diet.
  • You can apply crushed capsules of acidophilus and Bifidus on the infected parts of the mouth.
  • You can make a paste for infants by mixing breast milk and water. Rub it on their tongue and mouth once every day.
  • Nystatin can be taken from the pharmacies. Apply it on the white patches.
  • If you are suffering from oral thrush, do not consume cheese, tomatoes, mushrooms and alcohol in large quantities.
  • Visit your dentist for a regular check-up.

So, now you don’t have to worry about those tiny microorganisms growing in your mouth. With the help of these home remedies and tips, you can eliminate thrush.

In case the severity of the infection increases, visit your doctor. With proper food, hygiene and sleep you can eliminate this yeast infection!

You Will Also Like Reading:

How To Keep Good Oral Hygiene Naturally At Home

Homemade Natural Toothpaste For Better Oral Health

Hope all of the above information helps you in getting rid of or even prevent Thrush. It will surely help you to stay healthy and fit.

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Dr. Anand Ashok Buchake is an expert in the field of Ayurveda and works as medical practitioner. His expertise in the field of Ayurveda is proven from the fact that he was the topper in the final MD examination in the subject Dravyaguna in the year 2002 at Pioneer international university of Ayurveda, also known as the Gujarat Ayurveda University.He is associated with many reputed organizations such as the American Heart Association ACLS and BSL Course in South Africa.