A canker sore may be small, but it can be troublesome just the same. Fortunately, canker sores are generally short-lived and there are things you can do to help heal a canker sore.
A canker sore, unlike a cold sore, is not contagious. While a cold sore generally starts as several small blisters that turn into one large blister, and is usually on the lips, a canker sore is inside the mouth.
A canker sore generally has a yellow, gray or white center with a well-defined red border. Canker sores are usually about the size of pencil eraser and are located inside of the lips or cheek.
Canker Sore Causes
While no one knows for sure what causes canker sores, certain things seem to contribute to getting them. Being tired or run down, stress, poor nutrition and certain foods are all thought to cause canker sores. They can also occur due to trauma to the mouth, such as a jab with a toothbrush, biting the inside of your cheek, or a sharp piece of food, like a taco chip.
Some cankers sores are caused by problems such as a deficiency of Vitamin B12, zinc, folic acid, or even an iron deficiency. People who have canker sores frequently or have several canker sores all at once may be suffering from such a deficiency.
Canker Sore Remedies
A canker sore can take one or two weeks to heal, but here’s what you can do for some pain relief:
1. Try a styptic pencil.
Normally used to stop bleeding from razor nicks, used on a canker sore, the styptic pencil will numb the nerve endings and help to reduce the pain.
2. Rinse with salt water.
Mix ½ teaspoon of salt in a cup of water and rinse.
3. Take L-lysine tablets.
L-lysine, found in the vitamin section at drug stores, works wonders to heal current, as well as, prevent future canker sores.
4. Make homemade canker sore remedies.
Mix equal parts of Kaopectate or Milk of Magnesia with liquid Benadryl and swab the canker sore, or rinse with the mixture several times per day. Avoid swallowing, and be careful using this remedy on children.
5. Take Benadryl.
Benadryl helps to remove the inflammation of canker sores.
6. Use Canker Melts.
This is an over-the-counter product made from the root of the licorice, found to speed healing and reduce pain.
7. Avoid certain foods.
Avoid rough, scratchy foods such as chips, and also avoid spicy or acidic foods and drinks, such as tomatoes, citrus fruits, mustard, ketchup, peppers, orange juice and tomato juice. Also, avoid salty foods, like potato chips. These foods will irritate the sore.
8. Get relief with over-the-counter product.
Use an over-the-counter product that contains benzocaine, phenol or xylocaine. These products coat the surface and dull the pain.
9. Be gentle when brushing.
Use your toothbrush extra carefully to avoid further irritation of the canker sore.
10. Take a pain reliever.
Aspirin, ibuprofen, or acetaminophen can help to relieve the pain.
11. Make a mouthwash of Goldenseal.
Mix two teaspoons Goldenseal in a cup of boiling water; cool. Rinse with the mouthwash several times daily to speed healing.
12. Avoid alcohol and smoking.
Alcohol and smoking can cause further irritation to the canker sore and may increase healing time.
13. Eat yogurt.
Lactobacillus in yogurt has been found to control the outbreak of canker sores and decrease healing time.
14. Try Melissa leaf tea.
Melissa is a flowering herb found to shorten healing time of canker sores.
15. Soothe with sage mouthwash.
Sage’s antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties sooth canker sores. Make a mouthwash by mixing 2 teaspoons of fresh sage in a cup of hot water. Allow to cool, then gargle with the mixture.
16. Learn to handle your stress.
To help prevent future canker sores, find a stress reliever, such as mediation, exercise or yoga.
These canker sore remedies should help to heal your canker sores, or at least, provide some pain relief. If, however, you have unusually large canker sores, a high fever along with canker sores, sores that are spreading, or sores that last more than three weeks, make an appointment with your dentist for further evaluation.
Do You Have Canker Sore Remedies that worked for you? If So Please Share Below!
- 30 Handy Home Remedies for Cold Sores
- 16 Herbs That Make Pain Disappear
- Best Herbs for Hair Growth
- Gum Abscess Home Remedies
- Herbs for Gout