Mouth ulcers are the ulcers that appear on the mucous membrane of the buccal or oral cavity. They are also known as Canker sores, Stomatitis, and Mouth aphthae. The appearance of such sore can be on the inner side of cheeks, gums, inside the lips, and tongue. Such ulceration causes pain and discomfort.
Symptoms of Mouth Ulcers:
- Ulcers: Oval shaped, red inflamed border. And, the center is usually pale or yellow.
- Soreness and tenderness inside the mouth
- Difficulty in eating/drinking
- Sometimes, fever and swollen lymph nodes
Types of Mouth Ulcers:
- Minor: These ulcers are small in size with mild tenderness, and they disappear in 1 or 2 weeks.
- Major: Theses ulcers are big and deeper. They last for more than 6 weeks and leaves scarring.
- Herpetic: Herpetic ulcers appear in the form of small clusters and pustules.
- Recurrent: If these ulcers are left untreated or the cause is not cleared, they appear recurrently.
So, it is very important to understand the cause of such ulcers to get rid of them.
Causes of Mouth Ulcers:
Mouth ulcers occur due to various factors and are associated with chronic illnesses. To treat and get rid of these ulcers, we need to know their cause of development.
Following are the factors causing mouth ulcers:
- Trauma/ Irritation: Braces: Constant irritation to mucosal membranes by bite or irritants causes mechanical irritation to the mucosal layer. Recurrent irritation does not allow the layer to heal and results in the appearance of an ulcer.
- Food alteration: Dietic error means skipping meals or failing to have a meal at the desired time can give rise to an ulcer. Having too much of spicy/sour or sweet food also causes the appearance of ulcers.
- Vitamin B or Folic acid deficiency: Deficiency of vitamins and minerals due to the overconsumption of fast food and diet lacking in green leafy vegetables are also directly responsible for causing mouth ulcers.
- GIT Disturbances: Stomatitis has also been observed in people having chronic constipation or unsatisfactory bowel habits.
- Inadequate sleep: Sores are directly related to sleep. People who do not take adequate sleep are more prone to develop mouth ulcers.
- Hormonal changes: Pregnancy or menstrual cycle develop hormonal changes which are again related to Aphthous ulcers.
- Chronic illnesses: People with Anemia or Inflammatory Bowel syndrome or disorder suffer from chronic or recurrent aphthous ulcers.
- Stress: Stress is one of the major contributing factors to the development of ulcers. It has been observed that Exam time predisposes ulcers. Adults, who suffer from a stressful life and find it difficult to manage their stress, also tend to develop mouth sores.
Treatment for Mouth Ulcers:
- Saltwater: Saltwater is the combination of NaCl (Sodium Chloride) and H2O. Sodium Chloride is a mineral that helps to treat inflammation and pain. It is not only inflammatory but also antiseptic, thereby helps to clear bacteria.
- Honey: Honey is a natural, best, and safest ointment to apply to the ulcer. It has healing enzymes, which control the local irritation and reduce the inflammation.
- Ghee: Ghee is a natural moisturizer and probiotic. The application of ghee every night before going to sleep improves the redness and pain.
- Coconut milk – coconut oil: Coconut milk and oil have a soothing ability and provide a healing effect on the ulcers. Using fresh coconut milk is helpful more than preserved milk.
- Green Tea: Tea contains nutrient tannins, which are antimicrobial and antioxidant, that offer you great benefits. The intake of green tea helps to reduce the progress of the virus and bacteria. Refrigerate the used tea bags and place them on the ulcers for 15-20 minutes.
- Ice: Applying ice on the affected area helps to regulate the inflammation and offers a soothing effect. Apply ice twice a day.
- Non-Alcohol Mouth Wash: Using Non-Alcoholic mouthwash offers you antisepsis benefits. It does not cause pain and burning, which is usually results due to the alcoholic contents.
- Aloe Vera Gel: Aloe vera contains transparent gel. Mix it with honey and apply it to the ulcer. It has a soothing effect and helps in alleviating pain and inflammation.
- Drink Plenty Water: Hydration has a key role in improving oral hygiene and detoxicating the body which promotes recovery and prevents the recurrence of mouth ulcers.
- Supplements: Many times, ulcers result due to the deficiency of essential vitamins. Hence, capsules of Vitamin B12 / Folic acid help to treat as well as prevent the mouth ulcers.
Preventive Tips for Mouth Ulcers:
Prevention: Prevention is always better than cure, hence here are some useful tips that will help you to prevent mouth ulcers.
- Diet: A healthy diet containing lots of plant foods, sprouts, and green leafy vegetables is ideal for the person suffering from recurrent mouth ulcers.
- Hydration: An adequate intake of water throughout the day is the best detoxicating way one can adapt. Approximate 3 to 3.5 liters of water should be ingested every day.
- Sleep: Lack of sleep usually causes gastric disorders and other system disturbances which predispose the appearance of mouth ulcers. Thus, enjoy good, continuous sleep helps improve the efficacy of our systems and prevents ulcers.
- Stress-Free Life: Many ulcers result due to the burden of stress resulting due to either from professional or personal life. So, managing stress with proper communication and a positive yet rational mindset will always help to cope with it up effectively.
Even if after following preventive and home remedies, you happen to suffer from severe/recurrent mouth ulcers, prefer to seek Homoeopathy treatment for the same. Homeopathy not only helps to heal the prevailing suffering of mouth ulcers but also prevents its relapses and lets you enjoy a healthy life.