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Avatar universal

Is white foamy saliva an indication of reflux/GERD?

I have been having white foamy saliva for over a month now and my throat has a slight burning sensation in it sometimes. The white saliva seems to be giving my tongue a white coating also. The doctor first thought it was a fungal infection and gave me diflucan (2 150mg pills) and nystatin oral fluid, neither of them did anything at all so i stated to doubt is was a fungal infection since everyone says diflucan is very effective against fungus. My saliva is still white and I am trying to figure out if my saliva and tongue can be related to acid reflux. Can anybody shed some light on this for me?

52 Responses
Avatar universal
White coated tongue from fungi (candida) looks like a creamy, thick white patches; it is called oral thrush:
http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&q=oral+thrush&gbv=2

Slight, thin, diffuse white tongue cover is quite often, unspecific...and yes, it may go with acid reflux.

Your first test should be a BREATH TEST for Helycobacter pylori, which commonly causes gastric inflammation. Treatment is with antibiotics.
Avatar universal
Thanks, I dont think its thrush because anti fungal prescriptions did nothing for it.

I suspect something with the stomach because my saliva is white also.

I will ask about that test.
Avatar universal
Anyone else?
Avatar universal
Oh and i also have been burping a lot more than usual and get full quicker. The burping really gets me though, after I eat i will burp all day long.
Avatar universal
I intended to ask you about burping. This is one typical sign of infection with Helycobacter pylori.

http://www.medhelp.org/forums/search/68?query=h.+pylori&camp=
Avatar universal
Thanks, yeah i have burping a lot lately. How does one contract this infection?

I just feel like my entire digestive system has been out of sync lately, burping, churning, easily fill up during a meal.
Avatar universal
Also, would someone normally have bad breath if they have this infection?  Mine doesnt seem bad.
Avatar universal
H. pylori does not always go with bad breath. How it is contracted - it is funny, but one of the most frequent infection in the world - and - this is not known. It is considered that 50% of popoulation has it - usually people don't even know they have it.

Avatar universal
Ok, well hopefully that is all this is and the antibiotic treatment will clear it up. I have never had heatburn, burping, or white saliva until this all started a month ago.

I just really doubted the doc when he gave me yeast medication for my white tongue because the fungal medication did nothing at all. And my mouth looks nothing like the picutes of thrush, its not thick and stuck to my mouth, its just a general white coating on the papilla (spelling) of the tongue that is a bit thicker in the back. Plus my saliva is white and that comes from the stomach right?
Avatar universal
There are many causes of white and foamy saliva, I had a temptation to scare you with some really nasty causes.

But this saliva + hearburn + burping obviously points down to the stomach. Breath test is easy and cheap and non-invasing.

If there was salivary glands, lung, heart problem or other, there would be no heartburn and burping.
Avatar universal
I am pretty sure I have a healthy heart and lungs, I am a runner and I also get an annual physical where they check that stuff. I have good BP, pulse, and have a good EKG. I dont know about the salivary glands but I do salivate.

The white saliva makes me mad too, everytime I spit its white. Gross
1 Comments
Have you found out the cause? I have the foam in my throat, as soon as I eat, doesnt matter if its low acid food..then stays most of day, I wake up with it too. Tried nexium, antacids. Anything g you try help?? I've had it for 8 months, tried to go gluten free also and alkaline diet, no help
Avatar universal
Would you say your parotids are swollen, any discomfort when you press on them  (parotids are between the ear and and lower jaw). I mean, it could be from parotid glands, you swallow saliva which foams in the stomach and goes back...

You can also try this: drink enough (water or tea, with enough I mean to maintain an usual amount of morning urine, at least 200 ml), and avoid as much as proteins as you can (meat, milk, eggs, beans, soy etc) for 3-4 days. Also avoid anything acidic (vitamin C, aspirin, NSAIDs, any fruit or fruit juice, vinegar, wine etc). If this will reduce your saliva problem at least a little, this is then additional proof it is from the stomach.

If you'll tease me to send you a list of 104 causes of drooling, I will send it. But then don't say, I spoiled your day :) .
Avatar universal
If you search for "GERD symptoms", you'll find (among other):
- sour, bittery or salty saliva
- water brash

Dehydration alone may cause white foamy saliva, so...see above post.


Avatar universal
Im not dehydrated I drink enough water, I dont drool, its just that the saliva I do have is pretty much white.

With that diet I would starve to dealth. I did just eat chinese food for lunch and now im burping constantly, not loud burping or anything but just constant burping.
Avatar universal
hi, i had all your symptoms, i went and had tests for helico-bacter-pylori, it came back positive, took medication for it, then had test again for it, it was gone, then the next test was called an endoscopy, where i had a camera go down to my stomach, the infection totally destroyed my stomach linning and the end result was gastritis, massive inflammation, the doc said if i had left it for longer, then stomach cancer was a real possibility. anyway i took ant-acid medication, mainly nexium for about six months, then went back for another endoscopy, stomach was like brand new according to the result.im still on nexium because the doorway to the stomach never fully recovered from the damage that helico-bacter-pylori infection caused. so go and test for it, good luck.
Avatar universal
Thanks you very much for that information. How long did you experience symptoms for? I have only had symptoms for a bit over a month now. You also had a whitish tongue as well?
Avatar universal
hi again, yes whitish tongue no matter how much i tried to clean it, it stayed, some days less drammatic than others, depended on what i ate the previous night, as for the symptoms, i reckon i had them for years but on a small scale, i only went to the docs because it became intolerable, burning chest, acid reflux,sweating, especially my feet will feel like i stepped in water, now i feel wonderful, its been seven years now. cheers.
Avatar universal
Wow thats a long time to have it, hopefully I will have caught it in time so it isnt a major problem. I clean my tongue with a scraper and brush all the time and it just doesnt go away and I assume its because my saliva is white and coats it. I scrape white saliva from it but its right back again as soon as saliva flows onto it.

I appreciate you sharing your experience with this.

Avatar universal
Hi you have some of the similar symptoms of mine especially the full feeling after eating. I was diagnosed with gastritis caused by gerd but i also have a hiatus hernia the full feelingsounds more like gastric problems . An endoscope should put your mind at rest. I had a barium swallow which showed nothing the endoscope showed everythinggood luck
Avatar universal
Thanks. Ill go get checked out next week. I have been eating more finally as of recently but the burping is still there often especially after a meal. Even if I eat at night the next morning I will wake up a burp a bunch for a few minutes.
Avatar universal
I just came across this discussion today. I have been suffering with white foamy saliva and a coated tongue for months now. It all started in March (08) when I took some antibiotics. I also took diflucan and nystatin to try to counter the effects of the antibiotics. Nothing is making a dent in it. It has been 6 months now. I had every test in the book and then some - except the endoscopy. I just figured it was another dead end. I am hoping you got over whatever you had and if you did what was it and how did you fix it? Thanks.
Avatar universal
White coated tounge and saliva in mouth upon waking is a symptoms of disturbance in digestive tract. Its better you think about permanent cure. What i suggest you is either consult a good homeopathic or a good yoga teacher to learn agnisara kriya(abdominal lift) which balances the entire abdomin. This I'm telling you through my experiences. Don't neglect.
Avatar universal
I have white foamy saliva as well as tightness in chest, small lumps on back of tongue (which doctor said was not cancer), feel full very fast when eating.  Was diagnosed with acid reflux and am taking pantoprazole sod and malox which is not helping.  Actually my middle section feels like it is going to burst because of the tightness.  Spent the weekend in emergency because it was thought I might be having a heart attack.  Heart, liver, gall bladder and kidneys all seem to be all right.  Supposed to get a gasterology appointment.
Avatar universal
i am having a similar symptoms and i do not know what to do can some one please give me some advice?
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