Candida albicans is a fungus typically found in the intestinal tract, colon, and genito-urinary tract. Every human body has candida, and when found at a healthy level, candida assists the body with the absorption of nutrients. However, candida can overgrow in the body causing a range of health issues such as digestive problems, fatigue, mood swings, and skin and nail fungus infections, just to name a few.
What is Oral Thrush?
An overgrowth of this fungus can occur if the body becomes too acidic or is under a lot of prolonged stress. It can also occur due to various medications such as antibiotics - or other perscriptions that lower the immune system, uncontrolled diabetes, hormonal imbalances, dentures, or a diet high in sugar and carbohydrates. Candida will most often manifest itself either in the mouth or the vagina.
Oral thrush or oral candidiasis is the name given to candida overgrowth presented in the mouth. In this blog, we are going to discuss how essential oils can help with the treatment of candida that manifests in the mouth.
Do I Have Oral Thrush?
Symptoms of an overgrowth resulting in oral thrush can include;
- A creamy white coating on the tongue
- Oral inflammation
- Difficulty swallowing
- Loss of taste
- Oral mucous
These symptoms can be uncomfortable. The good news, however, is that research has found that essential oils possess the components needed to stop Candida in its tracts.
What Are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are derived from plant sources - either the leaf, root, bark, flower or fruit.
The oils extracted from these sources have been used since ancient times to treat and prevent various ailments, and are widely believed by cultures around the world to be a tonic and potent medicine for the mind, body, and spirit.
With the popularity of holistic medicine blossoming in recent years in America, essential oils are gaining a much-deserved spotlight as an alternative to pharmaceutical and chemical counterparts for treating and aiding various health issues and concerns.
How Can Essential Oils Help With Oral Thrush?
There are many strains of candida, all of which can adapt themselves to become resistant to antifungal medications that aim at killing off the targeted strain of candida. However, many studies are proving that essential oils are useful at targeting these resistant strains. This is likely due to variabilities or inconsistencies between one batch of essential oils and the next.
In other words, unlike highly controlled and chemically identical anti-fungal drugs, the chemical makeup in one bottle of essential oil will be slightly different from the chemical makeup of the next bottle. A bottle of antifungal tea tree oil derived from one tree will have a slightly different plant chemistry then another bottle of tea tree oil derived from a different tree. This makes it hard for the candida to adapt and become resistant to the essential oil.
Which Oils Target Oral Thrush?
When it comes to oral thrush essential oils of clove, tea tree, peppermint, thyme, and lavender have been shown to effectively treat oral pathogens including Candida Albicans.
How to Use Essential Oils for Oral Thrush
It takes a great deal of plant matter to produce just a small amount of essential oil. These oils are, therefore, extremely potent and need to be used with caution and care.
Here are 2 topical DIY recipes we recommend that are safe for adults to try at home.
#1 Coconut Oil Pulling
What you need:
1 tbsp Coconut oil
3 drops organic clove oil
Mix 1 tbsp of coconut oil with 3 drops of organic clove oil and stir until creamy. Swish the mixture in your mouth for about 10 minutes. Make sure you hit all areas of the mouth as you swish from side to side. When 10 minutes is up, spit it out into the trash and rinse mouth with water. (NOTE: do not spit down the sink or you risk clogging your pipes) Do this once a day in the morning before eating until symptoms subside.
#2 Antifungal Mouthwash
What you need:
2 tsp salt
2 drops of clove oil
2 drops of tea tree oil
1 drop of oregano oil
1 cup water
Carefully pour the salt into your glass bottle. Then add your essential oils. Pour in 1 cup of warm water, close the bottle tightly and shake until all the salt dissolves. Use this as you would a mouthwash (do not swallow).
Before buying your essential oils do your research first. Only properly distilled oils retain a therapeutic level of phytochemical content so make sure you choose high quality, organic essential oils that were safely processed to ensure no traces of chemicals or pesticides can be found in them. This will ensure that the oils are safe and effective to use orally (though not internally).
The essential oil recipes found in this blog are intended for topical application only. We do not recommend the internal use of essential oils. If you do intend to use essential oils internally, please consult a qualified aromatherapist or healthcare practitioner.