Candida has a pretty ring to it, until you remember its other names: thrush, oropharyngeal candidiasis (OPC) or moniliasis to name a few. And it's no flower of innocent youth; OPC's a yeast fungus living in your mouth.
When candida blooms (reproduces at a fast rate, disrupting oral, ecological balance) you'll find patches of white and yellow on the roof of your mouth, on the gums, on your dentures and most especially, on your tongue. Try to remove the patches and you'll bleed a bit.
So how do you know it's time for a thrush treatment? Here are the top five reasons to call your dentist or doctor for treatment of thrush today:
1. Your immunity is compromised. Get an oral thrush treatment immediately if you have HIV, cancer, have undergone treatment for cancer or received an organ transplant. But let's not stop there. If you've been ill for a long time, are malnourished, or have any disease that leaves your body too weak to defend, ask for a treatment for thrush.
2. Your throat hurts. If candida spreads from your mouth to your throat, you'll find that you have trouble speaking and swallowing and will need a thrush treatment. Don't hesitate on this one. Thrush throat threatens your blood and lungs. Call your dentist for an oral thrush treatment right away.
3. Your infant won't eat. Most newborns get thrush when their immune systems are underdeveloped. You probably shouldn't worry if this happens, unless a sore mouth keeps your child from eating or if thrush lasts more than 10-14 days. In either case, ask your doctor for thrush treatment immediately.
4. You see harder lesions. Treatments for thrush aside, you may need other medical help if you see these. Lesions that can't be rubbed off might be pre-cancerous, though this is rare. Your dentist will probably take a sample for lab analysis or provide a treatment of thrush.
5. Candida persists or recurs. Battling yeast for more than two weeks, or it keeps coming back? Ask your dentist for an oral thrush treatment and to take a look at your teeth and gums for other problems. Never-ending yeast usually accompanies never-ending dry mouth. Your dentist may prescribe tooth saving techniques along with your thrush treatment.