Thrush is a condition that occurs when the fungus Candida albicans overgrows in the lining of the mouth and throat. The growth leads to the formation of thrush's characteristic white patches in the mouth, throat, inner aspect of the cheeks, palate, and tongue. Thrush can also cause mouth sores and pain. The overgrowth of Candida albicans can occur for different reasons. The usual suspects are diseases that weaken the immune system such as diabetes, certain drugs, stress, and smoking. Candida albicans can also overgrow in the lining of the vagina, causing vaginal thrush. Here are some home remedies for thrush that have withstood the test of time.
People have been using cinnamon as a medicine for thousands of years. It has the top antioxidant effect among all popular spices, and it contains useful substances that fight inflammation. Cinnamon can also assist in boosting the immune system. A recent study found that candida overgrowth is less likely to occur in those who add cinnamon to their daily diets.
Cranberry juice helps with urinary tract infections and may even battle cancer and heart disease. It contains many different useful vitamins and minerals and has a larger antioxidant capacity than apples and spinach. Cranberries also help prevent tooth decay, thanks to a chemical that inhibits the attachment of bacteria to the teeth. One cup of unsweetened cranberry juice can help make the pH of the mouth more acidic, preventing the overgrowth of the fungus that causes oral thrush.
Vegetables ferment when natural bacteria feed on the veggies' starch to form lactic acid through a process called lacto-fermentation. Fermentation makes the vegetables last longer and also creates probiotics and beneficial vitamins and enzymes. Popular fermented vegetables include sauerkraut in Germany and kimchi in Korea. Fermented vegetables are useful in treating oral thrush because they introduce beneficial bacteria into the body and help restore the balance in the mouth. They can also boost the immune system when eaten on a regular basis.
Salt is a powerful remedy against oral thrush. Rinsing the mouth with salt water daily can be quite helpful in relieving the itching and pain. Salt baths can also be used to heal vaginal thrush. Use natural sea salt or Himalayan pink rock salt for a salt bath rather than commercial table salts.
Probiotic yogurt and other cultured dairy products, such as goat milk kefir, are powerful weapons against Candida infections. They help restore the natural balance of beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract. To effectively treat the fungal infection, avoid sweetened yogurt. Eat yogurt for a few days, or rub it on your tongue and your mouth, let it sit for five minutes, and then wash your mouth, preferably with warm water.
Coconut oil has a powerful ability to fight microbes and can even kill the fungus responsible for thrush, thanks to the combination of lauric acid and caprylic acid. Candida does not grow very well in an acidic medium. When the mouth becomes more acidic, Candida finds it hard to grow. A recent study comparing coconut oil to a common antifungal drug found that coconut oil is effective in preventing the overgrowth of candida. Coconut oil also has antioxidant effects and can help in maintaining a clean oral cavity. Add it to your food, or apply it inside your mouth.
Apple cider vinegar helps fight a Candida infection by resetting the pH inside the mouth to its normal levels. It can also strengthen the body's natural defense systems to fight the harmful fungus. The Journal of Prosthodontics published a study in 2014 that showed the antifungal effects of apple cider vinegar on Candida infection. Baking soda is a cheap and available remedy for killing the fungus that causes thrush. The Brazilian Oral Research Journal published a 2009 study showing that a 5 percent mixture of sodium bicarbonate was effective in fighting Candida. Baking soda generally helps to maintain a normal pH inside the mouth as well.
Clove oil is useful in fighting Candida. The journal Microbiology recently published a study that found that clove oil was just as effective as a commonly used antifungal medication called nystatin. Oregano oil can rapidly kill bacterial and viral infections, and some studies show that it also has powerful antifungal abilities. When combined with sodium fluoride, a component of toothpaste, myrrh oil shows powerful antifungal activity, boosting the immune response and helping in the reduction of inflammation.
Tea tree oil also has excellent antifungal effects in healing oral thrush caused by the Candida fungus. A 2004 study in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy showed that tea tree oil has a significant effect on Candida albicans and a more general antifungal effect as well.
Sugars and plaque may build up on your dentures, so it is important to maintain good denture hygiene and wash them regularly. Take dentures out at bedtime, and soak them in vinegar or a natural cleaner to help the lining of your mouth recover more rapidly.
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