ABC Medical Center > Oral candidiasis

What is Oral candidiasis?

21:53 - 4 May , 2021


It is a disease caused by a fungus called candida (Candida albicans), which despite being a microbe that is always present in the oral cavity, when there is excessive proliferation causes the appearance of whitish plaques on the tongue, inner cheeks, gums, tonsils, or throat.

In general, this disease arises from an immune system dysfunction caused by the presence of other conditions or the intake of some drugs. It is not a risk if you are in good health, otherwise, there may be complications.

Although anyone can have oral candidiasis, it occurs more frequently in babies, older adults, and people with a weak immune system due to cancer, AIDS, or some pathology that affects the body’s defenses. Some of the factors that can trigger it include:

  • Vaginal yeast infection.
  • Diabetes.
  • Oral dysfunctions (false teeth).
  • Some drugs (antibiotics, corticosteroids) that usually modify the natural state of body microorganisms.

Signs and symptoms Oral candidiasis

The most frequent symptoms consist of:

  • Reddish sores at the corners of the lips.
  • Difficulty swallowing due to inflammation and burning.
  • Whitish and greasy plaques on the throat, tongue, cheeks, gums, and tonsils.
  • Taste difficulties.
  • Light bleeding.
  • Pasty and dry mouth.

In babies, in addition to the distinctive white lesions in the mouth, they may have trouble feeding, and be fussy and irritable. In addition, they may transmit the infection to the mother when breastfeeding, having the following symptoms if the breasts are infected:

  • Painful breastfeeding.
  • Sore breast
  • Hypersensitivity, redness, and itching in the nipples.
  • Flaky areola with an unusual shine.

Oral candidiasis is usually a minor problem in healthy people, but if you have a weakened immune system, the symptoms can worsen and cause systemic infections by spreading to other organs.

Diagnosis and treatment Oral candidiasis

After reviewing your symptoms and medical history, your doctor will perform a thorough oral examination and collect a biopsy from the affected areas.

If deemed necessary, he or she will also request blood samples to detect other conditions that cause oral candidiasis.

If the esophagus is already involved, he or she will likely take a tissue sample to examine the damage and an endoscopy to examine the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum.

When the problem has been thoroughly identified, the treatment will be defined, which seeks to stop the fungus accelerated growth and prevent its reappearance through oral antifungal gel or liquid drugs, or mouthwash.

In addition to treatment, your doctor will recommend that you take the following steps to speed up the healing process and reduce the risk of getting oral candidiasis again, such as:

  • Avoid consuming sugary and fatty foods.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and gargle with water and salt.
  • Brush your teeth after every meal and floss.
  • Keep good hygiene in your dental prosthesis.
  • Use toothbrushes with soft bristles.
  • See your dentist regularly.
  • If you suffer from vaginal yeast, treat it as soon as possible.

At ABC Medical Center’s Internal Medicine Department, we offer health care services with the highest quality and safety, from the prevention, diagnosis, timely treatment, and monitoring of infectious, respiratory, endocrinological, dermatological, rheumatic, nephrological, gastrointestinal, and hematological pathologies of both chronic-degenerative diseases and acute conditions, through a comprehensive and multidisciplinary model.


  • medlineplus.gov
  • elsevier.es
  • mayoclinic.org
  • myhealth.ucsd.edu
  • msdmanuals.com
  • medigraphic.com
  • Ibáñez MNG, Robles BC, Lecona AJ. The frequency of oral candidiasis associated with the use of dental prostheses in patients of the Dental Clinic at the Anahuac University. Rev ADM. 2017;74(2):74-78.
  • Lira De Souza SREA, Medeiros RCA, Rodrigues LFI, et al. Irradiación Láser de baja intensidad en cepas de Candida: In vitro. Rev Cubana Estomatol. 2014;51(4):358-365.
  • Rueda-Gordillo F, Hernández-Solís SE, Gaitán-Cepeda LA, et al. Diferencias por resistotipificación entre cepas de C. albicans aisladas de la cavidad oral de pacientes VIH+ y seronegativos. Odovtos-Int J Dent Sc. 2018;20(2):103-111.
  • Núñez-Velasco S, Jiménez-Cornejo MC. Candidiasis. Hipoc Rev Med. 2011;6(24):12-15.

How can we help you?

    The dissemination of the content of this material is for informational purposes only and does not replace, under any circumstance or condition, a consultation with a specialist doctor, for which the ABC Medical Center is not responsible for the different use that may be given to it. If you require more information related to the subject, we suggest you contact the specialist doctor you trust directly.