Causes and Treatment of Baby Thrush

If you have a baby at home here’s something you’ve may have dealt with or deal with in the future - thrush. In fact, oral thrush is a common infection for babies.

A fussy baby may be crying about more than hunger and a dirty diaper - he may be in pain because of a mouth infection.

“It’s really quite obvious. You see these kind of thick white patches, almost curd like, on the tongue, on the inside of the mouth, on the gums inside,” pediatrician, Dr. Claire McCarthy points out.

Thrush is a fungal infection caused by an imbalance of normal bacteria in the body. It may be triggered by illness or medication such as antibiotics or steroids used to treat asthma. Dr. McCarthy sees a couple of cases each week, mostly in breast-fed infants.

“It’s very contagious and this a very common thing that will happen. The mother and baby will keep giving it back to each other,” McCarthy explained.

To get rid of the infection, Dr. McCarthy recommends sterilizing anything that’s been in a baby’s mouth, including pacifiers and bottle nipples. She said thrush will sometimes clear up on its own, but she often prescribes an anti-fungal medication.

“It’s common, it’s treatable, it goes away and I think families really shouldn’t worry too much about it,” McCarthy assures.

For more information on oral thrush, go to www.kidshealth.org.


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