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Antibiotic and steroid use are the most common reason for yeast overgrowth.The former kills the bacteria which would otherwise help maintain Candida at safe levels, thus allowing the fungus to overgrow.
Thrush (Oral Candidiasis): A parent's guide to condition and treatment information Who's At RiskThrush is very common in newborn babies and infants. Other factors leading to thrush in children include:Diabetes or other glandular (endocrine) disorders Genetic disorders such as Down syndrome A course of oral antibiotics Chemotherapy Leukemia or lymphoma Poor nutrition Immune deficiency, such as HIV/AIDS Use of inhaled steroids for certain lung conditions
Treatments and drugsThe goal of any oral thrush treatment is to stop the rapid spread of the fungus, but the best approach may depend on your age and the cause of the infection.Treating oral thrush in childrenToddlers with mild oral thrush who are otherwise healthy may need no treatment at all. If the infection develops after a course of antibiotics, your doctor may suggest adding unsweetened yogurt to your child's diet to help restore the natural balance of bacteria. Infants or older children with persistent thrush may need an antifungal medication.Treating oral thrush in healthy adultsIf you're a healthy adult with oral thrush, you may be able to control the infection by eating unsweetened yogurt or taking acidophilus capsules or liquid. Acidophilus is available in natural food stores and many drugstores. Some brands need to be refrigerated to maintain their potency. Yogurt and acidophilus don't destroy the fungus, but they can help restore the normal bacterial flora in your body. If this isn't effective, your doctor may prescribe an antifungal medication.PreventionThe following measures may help reduce your risk of developing candida infections:Rinse your mouth. If you have to use a corticosteroid inhaler, be sure to rinse your mouth or brush your teeth after taking your medication. Try using fresh-culture yogurt containing Lactobacillus acidophilus or bifidobacterium or take acidophilus capsules when you take antibiotics. Practice good oral hygiene. Brush at least twice a day and floss at least once. Replace your toothbrush frequently until your infection clears up. If you have problems with strength or dexterity in your hands, an electric toothbrush can make brushing easier. Avoid mouthwash or sprays — they can destroy the normal flora in your mouth. Try warm saltwater rinses. Dissolve 1/2 teaspoon of salt in 1 cup of warm water. Swish the rinse and then spit it out, but don't swallow.