Can you imagine a oral thrush in babies? It can be very distressing especially if you see your son or daughter refusing to nurse because of mouth sores. Frighteningly enough, this is a fact of life. Babies are not spared of oral thrush.
What is Oral Thrush?
Oral thrush is common among infants. It is caused by the overgrowth of yeast known as the Candida Albicans. Naturally, people have candida in the body. However, their numbers are so small to cause harm.
Overgrowth of Candida can produce medical symptoms that are difficult to ignore. It can cause symptoms not just in oral cavity but in other body parts as well including the male and female private parts, stomach, skin and breast. It is important to be aware of the predisposing factors of oral thrush in order to effectively manage and prevent the condition.
As mentioned earlier, overgrowth of the Candida can bring about unwanted symptoms. But what is regulating the numbers of the yeast in the body. The truth is the growth of yeast is dependent on a number of factors.
This includes the person’s immune system and the good bacteria that live in balance with the yeast. Since babies, immune system is not yet fully developed.
In other words, babies have a high possibility of getting infected. Aside from the underdeveloped immune system of babies, there are illnesses and medicines that can lower the immune system of the said age groups. If a child is receiving chemotherapy, the candida can grow in numbers and lead to an infection like oral thrush.
Moreover, using unclean pacifier and baby toys can sooner or later endanger the baby’s health as the fungus are fond of dark, damp and dirty areas. Dirty pacifiers and baby toys can be a vehicle to the development of thrush.
Symptoms of Oral Thrush In Babies
Oral thrush in babies presents the same symptoms as with the adults. Check the mouth for white plaques. The gums may appear inflamed too. Since the mouth is sore, the child may refuse to nurse or drink from bottle. Expect the child to be fussy.
So, how can oral thrush in babies be managed and prevented? The good news is that oral thrush in babies is manageable and treatable especially for the healthy brood and adults. Unfortunately, for some with an underlying medical conditions, it can be life threatening. They are required to report any infections to their health care provider so that they will be given prompt treatment.
Oral Thrush In Babies Prevention
They say that prevention is always better than cure. Well this is true. Preventing the disease can save you on hospital bills and medication. Aside from that, it gives you the assurance that your child is in a good state of health. To prevent oral thrush in babies, make sure that you sterilize everything that your child puts into her mouth. If the child is breastfeeding, the mother must make it a habit to wash the nipples with clean cotton balls soaked in warm water.
Furthermore, if the child is being bottle-fed, she should be given sterile water after finishing the formula milk. Remember that formula milk is rich in sugar and yeast feasts on anything that has high concentration of sugar.
As for the cure of oral thrush in babies, your child’s pediatrician may prescribe medication to fight off the fungus that is causing horrible symptoms in mouth, private parts, stomach, skin and breast. If your child is big enough to eat, you can also give probiotics rich food because these food groups contain good bacteria. Or supply your child with fruits and vegetables to boost her immune system. Good luck!