How do other illnesses affect oral thrush?

Other illnesses, particularly those that make your immune system weak, can make it more likely that you will develop oral thrush. Cancer and diabetes can make you more vulnerable to oral thrush. HIV/AIDS especially compromises your immune system and leaves you vulnerable to life-threatening, systemic thrush infections.

Some serious illnesses, including cancer, HIV/AIDS, and diabetes, can up your chances of getting oral thrush (candidiasis). In fact, frequent attacks of oral thrush is often an early sign of HIV. You're also at higher risk if you are being treated for cancer, have anemia, or take antibiotics or steroids because of your weakened immune system. People with diabetes have high levels of sugar in their saliva which feeds the yeast that causes the infection.  

Oral thrush can be more common in people with other illnesses. It often occurs in people with weak immune systems. This includes the very young, elderly or those debilitated by disease, such as diabetes or leukemia. In addition, people with dry mouth syndrome are susceptible to candidiasis. Oral thrash is also more common after antibiotic treatment, which can decrease normal bacteria in the mouth. 

Continue Learning about Oral Thrush

What is oral thrush?
American Dental AssociationAmerican Dental Association
Candidiasis is a fungal infection (also called moniliasis or oral thrush) that occurs when the yeast...
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What are the symptoms of thrush (oral candidiasis)?
People with diabetes may experience signs and symptoms of thrush, (oral candidiasis; caused by the f...
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How can thrush be prevented?
Oral thrush (candidiasis) can usually be prevented with some simple steps:Practice good oral hygiene...
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Are there alternative treatments for oral thrush?
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)
Minor cases of thrush or cases in people with healthy immune systems can be treated without medicati...
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.