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5 Symptoms and Signs of Thrush and 5 Natural Home Remedies for Thrush

Updated on January 7, 2015
Thrush can give you a severe headache
Thrush can give you a severe headache | Source

What is thrush?

Thrush is a common health complaint. It is also known as candidiasis, and is a fungal infection caused by the yeast organism Candida albicans.

There are different types of thrush but oral and vaginal thrush are the most common types of thrush, However, sometimes it can also be found on the skin in damp places such as underneath the breasts.

Young babies can also develop thrush in the mouth which can transfer to the mother's nipples. In this case, both mother and baby need treated. Cracked painful nipples can sometimes harbor the fungus.

Severe Outbreaks

Sometimes thrush can be more severe than normal. If, you are suffering from an illness which affects the immune system such as flu, you are more likely to develop thrush.

Also, someone taking hormonal, antibiotic or steroid based drugs are more likely to develop thrush.

Antibiotics are well known to cause thrush as the damage the friendly bacteria which live in our bodies as well.

Why do we develop thrush?

Candida albicans is one of the many micro organism which live naturally in our bodies. It is found in the gut, mouth and on the skin. Yeast do not normally cause a problem but can do so when they multiply out of control, and change it to an invasive fungal form.

The body's friendly bacteria normally keep Candida under control but sometimes the immune system fails, and the cells of Candida start multiplying out of control. This can have some surprising symptoms, and many are not familiar with all of them.

Ways to avoid vaginal thrush when taking antibiotics

Although not everybody develop thrush when taking oral antibiotics, it is still a very common problem. It may happen during your course, or when you have finished taking the antibiotics.

There are, however, some things you can do to try to avoid the problem.

  • Take a good probiotic during the treatment and for up to two weeks afterwards
  • Avoid sugar - sugar encourages Candida to grow
  • Eat a yogurt everyday
  • Wear cotton underwear

5 Symptoms of Thrush

Vaginal Discharge

Many women experience vaginal thrush after a course of broad spectrum antibiotics. Whilst this condition is very unpleasant, it is not dangerous.

Vaginal thrush produces an itchy and burning sensation at first, and a discharge might appear later but is not always present. The discharge associated with vaginal thrush is off-white, slightly yellow and may appear similar in texture to cottage cheese. It smells unpleasant, and is the most visible symptom of thrush.

If you suffer vaginal thrush when you are in a sexual relationship, it is important that both you and your partner is treated.


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Fatigue and Tiredness

Tiredness can also be symptom of thrush, or an active Candida albicans invasion. It is now known that the fungus can penetrate the mucous walls of the gut, and enter the blood stream.

This can lead to tiredness and severe blood infections. The fungus will destroy many micro nutrients and vitamins which means the body's cells are not getting their fuel. Not all doctors consider this problem when a patient talks about tiredness, and anemia is sometimes offered as an alternative diagnosis.

If, you so suspect this to be the case, it is important to insist on a blood test. This can be one of the most debilitating conditions to deal with, and can sometimes mean a long term health problems. Whilst there are some excellent conventional treatment available, alternatives treatments will help to make the body's immune system stronger.

Headaches can be a symptom of thrush
Headaches can be a symptom of thrush | Source

Depression and Headaches

Depression is also a less common form of a thrush infection, but it is more common than we think. We now know that infections such as viral and bacterial infections can lead to depression, so why can't a thrush infection. It is after all an infection which affects our psychological balance.

If you are suffering from a combination of headaches and depression, this could well be an option to explore. It is more common after a lengthy medical treatment but can still occur.

When infections invades our bodies, they may also deal with a sensitive neuro connections. This lead can lead to depression, and perhaps even more severe problems such as migraines.

Once again, this is not a quick fix but rather something which has to be dealt with step by step.

There are many different ways to treat thrush naturally

Thrush can cause an upset stomach

Doctors have finally recognized that thrush, or Candida albicans, can be behind many cases of IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome).

IBS can be caused when there is a disturbance in the intestinal flora. The gut realize on a healthy balance between friendly and unfriendly bacteria to function well. When this delicate balance is upset it can lead to painful cramps, knotting sensations which is known as IBS.

The result is often a combination of constipation and severe diarrhoea with terrible stomach pain. This condition can appear after a foreign holiday, or alternatively after medical treatment. It can be difficult to put right as the bowel is large, and treatment can take time.

If you suspect this, it is a good idea to have it confirmed by a doctor but alternative treatment do work really well.

Aching Joints

If you have ever suffered from vaginal thrush, you may have noticed your joints can ache at the same time. You may even be experiencing symptoms which are similar to the flu, and start a course of treatment for flu.

Aching joints is a less common sign of thrush but not all that rare. It is a symptom which is not often associated with thrush, or an outbreak of Candida albicans, but it may still happen.

It is very common after a virus infection or bacterial infection, when the body's immune system has been forced to work very hard. There is even a possibility that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is linked to thrush infections.

You may find it is particularly the joints in your lower extremities which are affected. Keep an eye out for aching ankle joints, and even the joints in the wrists have been known to have been severely affected.

This means the condition is in your blood stream, and you need to take swift action to prevent further problems.

5 Natural Home Remedies for Thrush

Garlic is a natural home remedy for thrush
Garlic is a natural home remedy for thrush | Source

5 Natural Home Remedies for Thrush

Dealing and treating thrush is a matter of re-balancing the body. It can initially help to take a conventional treatment but it is always best to try to treat the entire immune system.

Over 90% of the immune system lives in the bowels, or gut, so this is the best place to start.


If you have been treated for a bacterial infection over a longer period of time, you may find your stomach is upset. You might be suffering from alternative problems with constipation and diarrhea.

It is crucial to re-balance the intestinal flora as soon as possible, and one way to do so is to take a good quality pro-biotic.

Pro-biotics will help to replace the friendly bacteria which have been destroyed by the treatment. There are different ways of doing this. Buying a supplement is one idea which is very convenient and works fast.

There is, however, another school of thought, that kefir may help to re-balance the gut. This is an excellent very gentle way to achieve the perfect balance again.

When you suspect your problem is linked to taking antibiotics, it is a good idea to remember this for the future and to take a probiotic when you are taking the treatment.

Ground Flaxseed can help to protect the lining of the bowel

Flaxseed Can Help to Treat Thrush

Ground linseeds will help to clean the gut, and also restore balance. This is a treatment which is not often recommended but it is very effective.

It works by reducing inflammation in the bowel, and therefore balance is restored over time. This natural remedy becomes more effective when taken first thing in the morning.

Avoid drinking tea or coffee for one hour after the treatment, and you will soon find you stomach becomes less bloated.

There are a choice of linseed and flaxseed products on the market, and as well as healing the gut, they will give you an extra energy boost. This is especially important if you have been ill for a loner period of time.

This treatment helps the body to heal it self, and over a period of time balance is restored. It is an excellent treatment which works well in combination with a good quality probiotic remedy.


Eating for thrush seems to be another alternative.

It is important to acknowledge that some foods may be making you more sensitive to thrush. On top of the list is white sugar, bread and many of the convenience and fast foods.

Spaghetti and pastas are also made from white milled flour, and can lead to problems. When you are suspecting that your diet might be behind your health problems, you should start keeping a food diary.

This will soon tell you if yeast is behind your health problem.


Garlic is a natural remedy for thrush infections which work extremely well. This can be used both as a preventive treatment and during an outbreak. It work by killing off the fungus spores, and preventing their regrowth.

In ancient times this was the most popular treatment, and remain just as effective today. Garlic will also help to boost the immune system, and does not kill off friendly bacteria. It seems to recognize harmful bacteria, and will destroy them.

This is an especially effective treatment if you suspect you have a thrush infection in your bloodstream.

Yogurt and Thrush

Adding yogurt to your diet is another good idea, but if you suffer from vaginal thrush you can also use it as an internal treatment.

Some women dip tampons into live yogurt and treat themselves, but there are now now also pessaries available containing freeze dried lactobacillus bacteria. This is very similar to the active ingredient found in yogurt. They normally clear up symptoms very quickly, and provide long lasting results.

They work by changing the acidity in the vagina and this encourages the growth of natural friendly bacteria.

Always Get a Diagnosis

If you are not absolutely sure that you are suffering from thrush, it is best to get a diagnosis. The doctor may offer you a conventional treatment, but many doctors now recognize that thrush is one of the conditions which can be treated very effectively using natural remedies.

There are also some illnesses and health conditions which can cause thrush. A common problem is undiagnosed diabetes, so it is very important to visit your doctor if your frequently suffer from thrush.


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    • profile image

      Rebecca 2 years ago

      What a helpful article! I can't wait to start trying out these suggestions. I must say, faster, clearer explanations than multiple visits to the Dr. Thank you very much.

    • Healthyannie profile image

      Healthyannie 2 years ago from Spain

      Many natural remedies work just as well as conventional medication.

    • poetryman6969 profile image

      poetryman6969 2 years ago

      An interesting article. I always like to see natural ways of treating problems like garlic and yogurt.