If you’ve ever had a canker sore, you know how painful they can be. They often just appear seemingly for no reason. These uncomfortable sores are often found on the inside of the cheek or along the gumline. But they can be anywhere in the mouth. They usually heal without requiring any help from a dentist in Saugus, MA. However, there are a few steps you can take to help prevent them from occurring. The way to prevent canker sores is to find out what it is that triggers them.
What Causes Mouth Sores?
There is no single cause that leads to canker sores. They often occur following trauma to the soft tissues in the mouth such as when you bite your cheek by accident. A flare-up may occur during a time of extreme stress. For some people, eating acidic foods like strawberries, coffee, tomatoes, and citrus fruits can lead to sores. It can also occur as a result of vitamin deficiency. Some diseases can make you more susceptible to developing canker sores such as celiac disease. If you have mouth sores that do not go away on their own, discuss them with your doctor.
How to Relieve and Treat Canker Sores
A canker sore usually only lasts a few days, but it can be painful and uncomfortable. They should be completely healed in a week or two without any type of medical or dental treatment. There are a few ways you may be able to find some relief while you wait for it to heal.
- Antibacterial mouthwashes can be used as a rinse to help soothe and promote natural healing when mouth irritations are minor.
- If the sore is extremely painful, over the counter medications like Tylenol or ibuprofen can offer some relief from the pain.
Five Tips for Preventing Canker Sores
Since each person may have a different cause behind the occurrence of canker sores, try to identify what is causing them. If you know it is the result of trauma to your mouth or they appear after you eat acidic foods, then making changes is easy. Here are a few tips to help you reduce or prevent canker sores.
- Get adequate sleep, rest, and relaxation as emotional stress and fatigue are often associated with canker sores.
- A canker sore often occurs after you bite the inside of your cheek or your tongue. To prevent this, eat slowly, chew your food carefully, and don’t talk while you are eating.
- Avoid spicy or acidic foods if you think they are responsible for the development of canker sores. If you already have a sore, these types of foods can make them feel more painful. Avoiding acidic foods and drinks hot, spicy foods can prevent them from getting worse or more painful.
- Canker sores are sometimes the result of a vitamin deficiency. Make sure to eat a diet that includes foods high in iron, zinc, vitamin B12, and folic acid. You may also take vitamins or nutritional supplements to help prevent deficiencies.
- Oral health habits can help keep the mouth free from bacteria and can bring some relief if you get a canker sore. Brushing your teeth two times a day and flossing once daily can help your sores in your mouth heal properly.
Contact Petinge Dental
If you have questions about frequent or severe canker sores in your mouth, contact our offices in Saugus, MA to speak with Dr. Stephen Petinge, DMD. He will be happy to speak with you about possible treatment and strategies for preventing or reducing their occurrence.