This section is from the book "Smith's Family Physician", by William Henry Smith. See also: Natural Physician's Healing Therapies: Proven Remedies that Medical Doctors Don't Know.
This complaint sometimes arises spontaneously, but is more commonly a symptom of other disorders. It comes on at first with an uneasy sensation or burning heat in the stomach, which increases gradually in violence. After some time, small pimples appear on the tip and edges of the tongue, which spread at length over the whole inside of the mouth, and cause such a tenderness and rawness of the parts that the patient cannot take any food with comfort. Sir Thomas Watson says:
"Thrush occurring in adults, in the course of other diseases, is often the harbinger of dissolution. It denotes considerable debility, and points out the propriety of sustaining the patient's strength by bark,wine, and nourishing food. It is remarkable how treatment of this kind will sometimes tell. I had a patient last summer, who lived for some months, in tolerable comfort, after a second attack of apoplexy. Every now and then he would have a crop of aphthoe appear, which was always an admonition to us that he not only would bear, but that he required, some tonic. A more generous diet, with bark, and Chlorate of Potass, would dissipate them in a day or two."
"Aphthoe seem sometimes to depend upon mere derangement of the stomach. A nobleman, who, when alive, was well known as a bon vivant, could never eat shell-fish (so I was told by his physician), without finding, within two hours, that his mouth was full of aphthoe. Even lobster-sauce would serve him thus."
If the complaint arises from a disordered stomach, a few doses of Compound Rhubarb Pill, and a teaspoonful of Carbonate of Magnesia two or three times a day will be serviceable; and an application of Borax and Honey ( as recommended in Thrush of Infants), with a few drops of Laudanum added to it, will be the best application for the mouth. If the patient notices what article of diet, or what description of diet, brings on the complaint, of course he ought to abstain from the offending substances.