You're likely to start by seeing your family doctor, pediatrician or a general practitioner. However, if you have an underlying condition that's contributing to the problem, you may then be referred to a specialist for treatment.
Here's some information to help you get ready for your initial appointment, and to know what to expect from your doctor.
What you can do
- Write down any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment.
- Write down key personal information, including any major stresses or recent life changes.
- List all medications, vitamins or supplements you're taking. Also, let your doctor know if you've recently used antibiotics or if you take oral or inhaled corticosteroids, such as those used to treat asthma.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
Preparing a list of questions can help you make the most of your appointment. For oral thrush, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- What caused this condition?
- Do I need any additional tests? Do these tests require any preparation?
- What treatments are available, and which do you recommend?
- Do these treatments have any side effects?
- I have other medical problems, so how can I manage them together?
- Are there any dietary restrictions that I need to follow?
- Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you're prescribing?
- How can I prevent this from happening again?
- Do I need to be tested for other diseases associated with thrush?
Don't hesitate to ask any other questions that occur to you.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:
- When did you begin experiencing symptoms?
- Have you recently taken antibiotics for an infection?
- Do you have asthma? If so, do you use a steroid inhaler?
- Do you have any chronic health conditions?
- Do you have any other new symptoms of illness?
What you can do in the meantime
If you or your child has oral thrush, you may need treatment with an antifungal medication. While you're waiting for your appointment, however, you can try eating unsweetened yogurt to reintroduce beneficial bacteria to your mouth and throat. Rinsing with salt water may provide some symptom relief. If you wear dentures, thoroughly clean your dentures daily.
Aug. 20, 2011
- Candidiasis. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/nczved/divisions/dfbmd/diseases/candidiasis/. Accessed April 25, 2011.
- Candidiasis. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merck.com/mmpe/print/sec10/ch120/ch120b.html. Accessed April 26, 2011.
- Lustig LR, et al. Ear, nose, & throat disorders. In: McPhee SJ, et al. Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment 2011. 50th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=2613. Accessed April 25, 2011.
- Candidiasis. American Academy of Pediatrics Redbook. http://aapredbook.aappublications.org. Accessed April 27, 2011.
- Kauffman CA. Clinical manifestations of oropharyngeal and esophageal candidiasis. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Is thrush causing my sore nipples? La Leche League International. http://www.llli.org/FAQ/thrush.html. Accessed June 29, 2009.
- Diabetes and oral health. American Dental Association. http://www.ada.org/sections/scienceAndResearch/pdfs/patient_18.pdf. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Clarkson JE, et al. Interventions for preventing oral candidiasis for patients with cancer receiving treatment. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2007;(1): CD003807.
- Pienaar ED, et al. Interventions for the prevention and management of oropharyngeal candidiasis associated with HIV infection in adults and children. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2010;(11):CD003940.
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