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Thrush

Thrush is caused by forms of a fungus called Candida. A small amount of this fungus lives in the mouth most of the time and is usually kept in check by the immune system and other types of germs that also normally live in the mouth.

However, when the immune system is weak, the fungus can grow. The following factors can increase the chances of getting thrush:

  • Being in poor health
  • Being very old or very young
  • Having an HIV infection or AIDS
  • Receiving chemotherapy for cancer or drugs to suppress your immune system
  • Taking steroid medications

Thrush is commonly seen in infants. Thrush is not considered abnormal in infants unless the disease lasts longer than a couple of weeks.

Candida can also cause yeast infections in the vagina.

Individuals with diabetes and have high blood sugar levels are more likely to get thrush in the mouth (oral thrush), because the extra sugar in the saliva acts like food for Candida.

Taking high doses of antibiotics or taking antibiotics for long periods of time can also increase the risk of oral thrush because antibiotics kill some of the healthy bacteria that help keep Candida within acceptable levels.

Individuals with poorly fitting dentures are also more likely to get thrush.

For additional information, please click here http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/oral-thrush/DS00408

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