Thrush is caused by a fungal infection occurring in the mouth
or the vagina and occasionally as a complication to nappy rash.
Oral thrush is most common in babies in the first few weeks
of life, and in older children and adults who just complete a
course of antibiotics or inhaled steroid therapy. Diabetics get
thrush a lot, as do pregnant women - both of these should see
Oral thrush affects the surface of the tongue and
the insides of the cheek - white patches known a "plaques" are
formed which resemble milk curds, except they are not so easily
removed and may bleed if they are scratched. Nappy thrush shows
as red papules on the outer edge of the nappy rash area and in
the skin folds.
Vaginal thrush affects the vagina externally or
internally and a white creamy yellow discharge is often produced.
The vulva may be very itchy, sore, inflamed and swollen. If the
discharge is a different colour you may not have vaginal thrush
at all and you should visit your GP.
Oral thrush - oral thrush in babies between 6 weeks and 2 years
should be seen by your GP.
For vaginal thrush, we recommend the use of an anti-fungal cream
or powder and pessaries. The cream and powder are suitable for
external thrush whereas the pessaries, which are inserted vaginally,
are effective in the treatment of internal thrush. For external
thrush, the cream used together with the powder is most effective
in controlling the condition. Annoying itch with this condition
can also be helped using LANACANE a local anaesthetic
cream that will deaden the itch while the anti-fungal preparation
is killing the fungus.
For nappy thrush, we recommend the use of an anti-fungal cream
to control the thrush before a return to CALDESENE
and CALDEASE to control nappy rash in the ordinary
TEA TREE oil in the bath water (just a few drops)
can also be very effective in the treatment of vaginal thrush.
Oral hygiene is essential after oral thrush to prevent recurrence,
a good mouthwash, such as ORALDENE should be used
just after recovery.
Several vitamins and organic supplements can be very useful in
the treatment and prevention of thrush A good steriliser is important
for any child with thrush.
- A breastfeeding mother feeding a child with oral thrush should
apply a small amount of anti-fungal oral gel to the nipples prior
to feeding to prevent re-infection in this way. A good steriliser
is essential if the child is bottle-feeding.
- Care must be taken to continue treatment for 2 days after the
symptoms of oral thrush have cleared and 5 days in the case of
vaginal thrush. In the latter case the male sexual partner should
also be treated even if he has no symptoms.
- Cotton underwear is better than synthetic in the prevention
of vaginal thrush, synthetic underwear on women and plastic pants
on babies can cause thrush, both giving the fungus the warm, moist
conditions in which it thrives.
- During vaginal or nappy thrush, soap, disinfectants and perfumed
toiletries must not be used, as they may aggravate the condition
- we recommend the use of ELAVE for babies
and VAGISIL for women in these situations.