Thrush is an infection caused by a fungus called Candida albicans. Candida is normally found in the gut and the mouth, but can be transferred to areas of the body e.g. vagina, and will thrive in the moist warm conditions.
It can be sexually transmitted, but as it exists naturally in the body it can thrive in some areas if the natural bacterial element of that area has become suppressed, as for example after antibiotic treatment.
Each part of the body has its own bacteria, competing for food supplies, they naturally deters others by their sheer presence in number. In some instances these bacteria can assist in processes as in the gut, for example.
The fungal infection Thrush, like other yeast, prefers sugar as its food source, in some conditions such as Diabetes, there is excess sugar so Thrush can be a problem. Thrush can grow in other areas outside the body such as skin folds in the upper thigh and axilla, and under the breasts. This can be particularly common in overweight or elderly people.
Thrush can cause an itchy irritation or white discharge if vaginal and therefore must be treated with anti fungal drugs such as Clotrimazole and Imidazole in cream or pessary form. Sometimes difficult infections may require taking an oral treatment such as Fluconazole.
Antibiotics are of no use in the treatment of Thrush as it is a fungal infection not a bacterial one.
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