Nature's Mothers Blog

Childbirth, Parenting and Other Passions

Geographic tongue July 18, 2011

Remember way back, over a year ago when Ayla was a little newborn with horrid thrush… wow, that seems like yesterday! I mentioned in my post about it  that she had these raised bumps on her tongue? Well, it turns out that these had nothing to do with thrush, and everything to do with her dad!! They both have geographic tongues.  I didn’t realise at the time was genetic, so didn’t give it a thought. And since she had thrush on her bum I presumed this was thrush too. But no!  They have remained.

Although there are days when her tongue is almost completely smooth, and days when they look like the surface of the moon, craters all over! The craters are like bald patches surrounded by a thin white line.   There is nothing you can do about geographic tongues. It is not serious, it does not hurt, bother or hinder her in any way. Steven is slightly embarrassed about his, but that’s it.  He just doesn’t go about sticking his tongue out. And no, it doesn’t change snogging or intimacy in any way…

The technical name for geographic tongue is Migratory Glossitis.  What happens is the little bumps on the tongue, called papillae, actually fall off.  They replace themselves within 7 to 10 days, but as the new bumps grow, so another patch starts to lose it’s bumps.

Although not common, it can be painful for some people, especially after eating certain foods (spicy, sharp, sour or citrus) . The penny has dropped…maybe this is why Ayla won’t eat oranges!  It is most common in people who are environmentally sensitive – have allergies, eczema or asthma.  And it often runs in families and is worse during periods of stress.  It is more common in females and is worse before periods and during ovulation and pregnancy.  I am watching Ayla’s at the moment, but I think it is worse while I am ovulating…makes sense since she still breastfeeds loads.

Apparently Vitamin B & Zinc are often prescribed for it, although it doesn’t seem to bother my darlings, so we haven’t tried it. I daresay our diet is quite high in these things anyway!

This is not her tongue, but this would be a on a really bad day!

Hers is probably more like this most of the time


My poor, tiny baby has thrush (Candida)… July 2, 2010

I realised about a week ago that our now 2 week old girl had thrush. Thrush is an overgrowth of the candida bacteria which lives in our gut and is very common in babies. Ayla had a white coating on her tongue, palate and the inside of her cheeks, which didn’t rub off when I tried to rub it (with a clean finger), and latching on for breastfeeding seemed to be painful for her.  She also got a couple of raised red spots down there on her bits and bum, which multiplied and got really red and angry looking within a day or two .  I mentioned it to the midwife who I saw on Monday who immediately recommended Canesten cream for the rash and nystatin drops to put in her mouth. When I asked if there was anything natural I could do she said no.  Being a nature mama, I really don’t want to put real life drugs into and onto my teeny baby unless there is absolutely no other option. I also, obviously, don’t want my beautiful Ayla to suffer…

So I popped into two different health food stores, spoke to friends and called my Naturopath to ask advice.  The consensus was that I should take loads of Acidophillus(friendly bacteria), as it would go through my milk, and also cut out yeast, sugar, mushrooms and anything that feeds thrush. I also got a pro-biotic(friendly bacteria) in powder form which I am putting on my nipples before each feed for Ayla to suck off and mixing with Calendula cream for Ayla’s bottom rash.  I must tell you that in the 2 days I’ve been doing this the signs of thrush have completely vanished from Ayla’s tongue and palate and there is just a bit left on the inside of her cheeks and her gums.  Her bum is still looking red and sore (although it doesn’t seem to be bothering her) but the sores seem to be drying out and I am just hoping that the acidophillus is working it’s way through her gut and that this will be over soon.  I am glad I didn’t just reach for the drugs though, as I am amazed at how fast the acidophillus and me cutting out sugar, yeast, etc has worked.  We’re also all sticking to our own towels and I’m making sure I’m washing my nipples after each feed and washing my bras in a hot wash.

Ayla is very lovely, and quite different to how I remember Erin to be, both in looks and in nature…though you can’t tell a lot about her nature yet.  She also seems to smile a lot as Erin did  (just wind, they say, but she does look us in the eyes and smile).  She seems to be more fragile than Erin was, although maybe I’ve just forgotten how completely dependent  and helpless newborns are.  She also cries a lot more which I find quite upsetting although I’m sure it’d be much more distressing if she was my firstborn! She also doesn’t latch on and feed quite as easily as Erin did, but I am hoping that this and the crying is due to the thrush and will pass soon. (she also seems to prefer my right boob to my left…) She is an absolute little miracle and we are so enjoying falling more and more in love with her everyday.

I will say that life with two children is busy, but exciting. I have to remind myself that it’s ok to just veg in the garden and hold baby while Erin runs around, and not try to do a million other things too.  I am very thankful that we share the cooking of meals with Andrew and Julie. That means I only have to think of and make one meal per week, and I make loads so there’s leftovers for other meals.  Quick meals are a must for other times – beans on toast, veggie burgers and salad, leftovers!

Next blog will be about how it’s going with breastfeeding my toddler and baby at the same time…watch this space…

Don’t forget to enter the Nature’s Mother Competition with your bump photos!!!


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