It's a yeast fungus called Candida Albicans or Thrush, which causes an infection in the mouth. It's not a type of infection that can be passed on to others as everybody has the oral thrush bacteria in their mouths, even babies.
Denture wearers are the most common group to be affected along with people who have difficulties keeping their mouths clean. Diabetics and anyone who takes steroids, either through inhalers or by mouth, may also have problems. Some antibiotics are responsible for causing thrush and many people find that taking certain antibiotics encourages a recurrence of infection, especially if taken over a long period of time.
When the denture is taken out, we may be able to see a very red area under the denture. There may also be red sore areas at the corners of the mouth.
If untreated, the condition can cause soreness in the mouth and may lead to poorly fitting dentures in the future.
Good Oral Hygiene. It is important to keep your mouth as clean as possible and rinse after meals. Smoking promotes growth of further yeast infections, as does keeping dentures in the mouth for 24 hours at a time. It is important to let the mouth rest too!
Dentures should be kept out over night. Some yeast infections will resolve completely if the dentures are not worn at night for two weeks.
If careful cleaning and good oral hygiene has not helped, you may be given some medication. There are many treatments available, most of them involving sucking tablets/lozenges slowly in your mouth. Treatment may need to be continued for one month.
We may want to check your mouth after treatment to check that everything has cleared up. If this is not the case, we may recommend further treatment. In some cases you may need to treat the mouth for a long time. It is important to have new dentures made every 3-5 years. This will prevent a build up of bacteria breeding within the denture, making it smelly, unhygienic and impossible to clean. Even if you do not have any teeth left it is important to go for regular check-ups to ensure that your mouth remains healthy.