How To Fight Off A Bout Of Oral Thrush

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Oral thrush is not a terribly serious condition. You don't need to call the emergency dentist or head to immediate care when your tongue gets white and fuzzy. But the itching, dryness, and strange appearance can certainly get to you, and so it's important to do something about your thrush. Here are the steps you should follow to fight it off.

Take a look at your medications.

A number of medications can throw off the balance of bacteria and fungi in your mouth, allowing the fungi to overgrow and cause thrush. Antibiotics and steroid medications are the most likely to do this, but if you're taking any type of medication, take a look at the label and see if thrush is noted as a side effect. If you're only meant to take the drug for another day or two, just wait it out. The thrush will probably clear up once you're done with the drug. If you're on the drug for a longer period of time, talk to your doctor to see if there's another medication you should take instead.

Eat more yogurt.

Yogurt is chock full of healthy bacteria that will help your body fight off the thrush. Start eating a cup of yogurt in the morning and maybe a second cup in the afternoon. Make sure you buy a brand that contains "live and active cultures." Other fermented foods, like kefir and kimchee, also contain bacteria that may help fight thrush, so add them to your diet if possible.

Cut back on mouthwash.

Your first instinct may be to use mouthwash more often to help clean out the thrush, but this is counterintuitive. Antiseptic mouthwashes kill bacteria, both good and bad. You need your healthy oral bacteria to help fight off the thrush right now, so you don't want to rinse it away with mouthwash. Stick to brushing and flossing only until the thrush clears.

See your dentist.

If you've gone over your medications, added yogurt to your diet, and stopped using mouthwash – but still have thrush after a week or two, it's time to make a dental appointment. Your dentist can look at your symptoms and prescribe an antifungal medication for you to take. He or she may also recommend a professional cleaning to get rid of any fungi that are hiding between teeth or along your gumline.

Oral thrush can be a nuisance, but in most cases, following the steps above can clear it up quickly.