First, I haven't been on a bicycle in like SIX WHOLE DAYS. I am pretty sure that at any moment I am going to A) burst out of my pants, having gained 286 pounds (even though they seem to fit exactly as they did before I went to the doctor way back on Tuesday) and B) die. Of lack of exercise and/or bicycle withdrawal syndrome. Etc.
The following may be kind of gross. I invite those who would rather not read an in-depth exploration of the current state of the inside of my mouth to visit Cake Wrecks instead.
It's okay, I won't be offended.
No, really, you can go. We're good.
Still here? Okay, well, don't say I didn't warn you.
So, here goes.
I am mostly over my bronchitis/sinus-infection thingy — and that in and of itself is actually a good thing.
However, I had conveniently forgotten that the medication I normally wind up taking for these things because I'm allergic to penicillin, amoxycillin, and erythromycin — co-trimoxazole, a combination of sulfa drugs sold under the name 'Bactrim,' if you actually feel like paying a brand-name price for a medication that's been around since the 1960s — has one very unpleasant side effect: oral thrush.
So now I no longer have bacterial squatters livin' it up in my sinuses and bronchii, but I do have flesh-eating fungi going to town in my mouth. Jeez.
I guess I'm actually kind of happy that the thrush isn't terribly bad. The last time I had this, it was violently unpleasant, and I couldn't eat for a week. Switching to another antibiotic and direct treatment with liquid Nystatin saved my bacon that time; this time, I don't think I'll need to go that far.
Rather oddly, it appears that artificial sweeteners help keep this stuff in check. I got a bunch of those sugar-free flavoring tubes to put in my water, since my sense of taste had gone all screwy and I couldn't bring myself to drink plain water, and it seems that whenever I drink some of the stuff from the little tubes, my mouth feels a little better.
It also seems to kill off some of the fungi, though not all of them. At least, however, I don't have furry white plaques all over the inside of my mouth. It just kind of looks like I got punched in corner of my lip right now, which is okay. It's also nowhere near as painful as previous episodes I've had.
Now, I suppose I could see this as solid evidence that the little drink tubes are, you know, basically poisonous (and, in fact, since they contain aspartame — whose metabolites contain formaldehyde, among other things — I would have to agree that's true). However, the same argument can be made in favor of most medications. Sulfa drugs will kill you if you take too much (and not just because you will slowly be turned into a giant yeast mold); even caffeine will kill you if you ingest too much.
I, for one, think it's fascinating, and once I figure out how to plan a formal experiment that does not involve my mouth or anyone else's (petri dishes and agar jelly should work, right?), I think I would like to conduct a study to see which substances other than Nystatin actually do help control this stuff (because my connection could be erroneous, and it could just be that my immune system is working better than before, largely thanks, I would hazard, to all the time I spend on the bike).
Thus far, artificial sweeteners look promising (sorbitol-sweetened mints also seem to help, which doesn't surprise me, since both sorbitol and xylitol have antiseptic qualities), and I suspect honey may help as well (honey is semi-famous for its anti-whatever properties).
In other news, I'm planning on starting a big ol' retrofit on the Swift some time soon, and as of the 23rd DD and I will have been seeing each-other for six months officially. Huzzah!
P.S. If I was Jens Voigt, candida spores would fear me too much to try to infest my mouth.
Sadly, I'm not.