A canker sore, also referred to as an aphthous ulcer, looks like a small, oval or round lesion that has a yellowish or white center surrounded by red.
It occurs only inside the mouth, the inside of the cheeks or on the tongue, throat or lips. You may have one or more than one aphthous ulcer at a time.
A canker sore can occur in both women and men of any age, however, they are more common in people between the ages of 10 and 40 and in women.
Common symptoms include:
- a tingling sensation in the mouth;
- a painful red area in the mouth;
- a small yellow or white oval-shaped ulcer in the mouth.
Notes – while a canker sore is usually small (rarely, it can also be very large), it can take as long as 45 days to fully heal. Sores that keep coming back can reveal an underlying health problem or they can indicate that there are low levels of some essential vitamins.
- a deficiency of vitamins or minerals, like – vitamin B12, iron, zinc, and vitamin B9 (folate);
- a family history;
- having celiac disease, as gluten may be associated with the development of aphthous ulcers;
- allergies to metals, like nickel;
- allergic reaction to certain types of bacteria found in the mouth;
- having braces on the teeth;
- having Behçet’s disease, a rare, autoinflammatory disorder;
- a regular diet high in acidic foods;
- mouth injuries, like – biting your lip or dental appliances;
- having your menstrual cycle (for women);
- underlying health conditions, such as an impaired immune system or Crohn’s disease;
- allergies to some medications;
- emotional stress;
- hormonal changes.
Prevention methods include the following:
- if you have a deficiency of folate, iron, or vitamin B12, make sure to have a diet rich in vitamins and minerals, especially – broccoli, red kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, green peas, oatmeal, oat bran, blueberries, navy beans, quinoa, chia seeds, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, apples, pears, mangoes, papayas, pineapples, plums, prunes, tomatoes, garlic, onion, cabbage, zucchini, or radishes;
- have any irregular dental surfaces repaired;
- do not talk while chewing;
- avoid toothpaste which contains sodium lauryl sulfate;
- avoid eating foods and drinking juices which have a lot of acids, like – lemon or orange juice;
- stress-management techniques (like yoga, tai chi, mindfulness meditations, spending time in nature, healthy sleeping habits, moderate physical exercise) may decrease the frequency of attacks;
- avoid anything which could cause trauma to the mouth, like – rough foods (potato chips or nachos) or hard toothbrushes.
Common treatments include:
- mouth rinses – a mouth rinse containing dexamethasone (a steroid);
- topical pastes – prescription and OTC pastes accelerate the healing process while dispelling the pain.
Here Is A List Of Essential Oils For Canker Sores:
#1 Tea Tree
This essential oil not only helps to treat the sores but it also reduces the pain as the healing process continues.
Chamomile oil is produced from the flowers of the chamomile plant. It has strong antibiotic, antiseptic, and analgesic properties. German chamomile contains 2 substances with anti-antiseptic and inflammatory properties – levomenol and azulene.
According to studies, chrysanthemum oil has a potent anti-inflammatory effect that may reduce symptoms.
This oil is a good home remedy as it has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. In addition, this oil is a natural anti-inflammatory agent that may help reduce pain and redness.
For best results, apply diluted peppermint essential oil directly to the aphthous ulcer at the first sign of it.
It contains curcumin, a compound that has powerful anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
It is excellent to reduce your stress levels and enhance your immune system.
#8 Melissa (Lemon Balm)
Melissa essential oil is an effective antibacterial agent that treats canker sores with speed.
It may be useful in treating aphthous ulcers due to its anti-inflammatory ability.
It contains eugenol, an effective painkiller, which has been used by dentists to bring relief to suferrers.
Home Remedies For Aphthous Ulcers
#1 Milk of Magnesia
Milk of magnesia (magnesium hydroxide) is among the most common OTC treatments for constipation. But, it is also useful for canker sores. Dab milk of magnesia directly onto the aphthous ulcer with a cotton swab, 3 times per day.
#2 Vitamin B-12 Supplements
A deficiency in vitamin B12 is thought to be one of the leading nutrient deficiencies worldwide. Symptoms of a deficiency can include:
- a poor appetite;
- constantly feeling tired;
- digestive problems, such as diarrhea, nausea, or cramping;
- poor dental health, including mouth sores and bleeding gums;
- having abnormal heart problems, like – palpitations;
- mood changes, such as – increased anxiety and depression;
- inability to concentrate well;
- poor memory;
- feeling dizzy;
- shortness of breath;
- difficulty breathing;
- joint pain;
- muscle weakness and aches.
A 2016 study established that taking a vitamin B-12 supplement reduces the number of outbreaks, the amount of pain from the aphthous ulcers, and the number of ulcers experienced in a month.
#3 Alum Powder
It may be used in pickling recipes as a preservative to maintain vegetable and fruit crispness and is found in the spice section of numerous grocery stores. Apply alum powder directly to an ulcer. After one minute, spit out the alum and your saliva.
#4 Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is an antiseptic that will help reduce the number of pathogenic bacteria in the mouth. Combine one part water with one part hydrogen peroxide and apply the solution directly onto the aphthous ulcer.
Important note – do not swallow the solution.
Propolis, the cement which is produced by honeybees to construct their hives, has amazing healing and antiseptic properties. Apply a tincture of propolis on the canker sore.
#6 Deglycyrrhizinated Licorice
It is an herbal supplement commonly used in the treatment of duodenal and gastric ulcers. According to the data, individuals with aphthous ulcers who gargled 3 times a day with deglycyrrhizinated licorice liquid extract dissolved in water found pain relief.