Has my baby got oral thrush?
Young babies are prone to oral thrush, especially those under the age of 2. It’s caused by the yeast fungus Candida albicans, which sometimes accumulates on the lining of the mouth.
Sometimes it is a mistake for milk deposits on the baby’s tongue as it looks a bit like a layer of cottage cheese. Your baby may also have a rash on their bottom as the infection passes through their digestive system.
What are the symptoms of thrush?
Some common signs that your baby might have thrush include:
- Cottage-cheese looking deposits in his mouth
- He becomes upset or fussy when feeding or sucking his dummy
- Instead of being clear, his saliva has a white shine to it
- He has a red and sore-looking bottom, resembling nappy rash
What can I do to treat it?
Thrush usually clears without treatment after a few days. However, it is easily treatable. Your GP or Health Visitor will be able to help you. The doctor may give your baby an antifungal medicine. You drop the liquid onto the affected areas, and it will soon clear up.
When should I give my baby his medicine?
The best time to give your baby medicine is just after a feed or drink. It is also advised to give your baby medicine for another two days after it has cleared up. If the thrush remains then take your baby to the GP.
Why does my baby have thrush?
Your baby usually picks this up through having a weak immune system, therefore causing bacteria to build up and cause infection. Also, babies can get it through standard vaginal delivery. Finally, thrush can also occur after a course of antibiotics, when the harmless flora (micro-organisms that live in the gut) that would have kept the thrush at bay.
Is oral thrush common?
Oral thrush is very common, around one in twenty babies suffer from this in the first eight weeks, and premature babies are even more likely to catch it due to their weak immune systems.