7 Home Remedies and Prevention Tips for Canker Sores

Get relief from canker sores

Natural Solutions for Canker Sores

Canker sores can cause irritation and pain, affecting your quality of life and making eating many types of food an ordeal. These sores affect the soft tissue inside your mouth and, while painful, typically aren’t a serious health concern. You can try some of the following 7 canker sore remedies to help relieve that pain.

What causes canker sores?

A canker sore can arise from a variety of causes. What you eat, cuts in your mouth, and even stress are all factors. What is causing canker sores in your individual case is an important thing to consider when choosing the right remedy.

How To Identify Canker Sores

Most canker sores are minor and will heal on their own within two weeks. However, during that time, they can be painful when you talk, eat, drink, or brush your teeth.

These sores are generally small and oval-shaped, affecting the inside of the cheeks or lips, under the tongue, on the roof of the mouth, or at the base of the gums. They can be white or yellow, often with red around the edge.

Major canker sores can also develop, although they’re less common. They are large and round with a distinct border. They can cause more significant pain, and you should visit your dentist for treatment rather than wait for them to heal.

Canker sores are distinct from cold sores. While cold sores are infectious, a canker sore is not. Cold sores generally form on the outside of the lips and around the mouth, although they can affect the inside of the mouth. Canker sores are only found inside the mouth.

Tips for Prevention

Here are some of the best ways to prevent or address a canker sore:

1. Maintain good oral hygiene.

One of the most important things you can do to prevent canker sores and help speed recovery is to maintain good oral hygiene. Bits of food left behind can irritate the soft tissues in your mouth, potentially causing a canker sore. Brushing twice each day and flossing daily help prevent that.

Be careful not to brush too hard, which can damage soft tissue and increase your risk of canker sores. You can also consider drinking more water, especially after snacks or meals. This helps wash away bits of food, which is beneficial in helping prevent canker sores, tooth decay, and gum disease.

2. Avoid sharp or irritating foods.

Some types of food are more likely to irritate soft tissue and cause canker sores. Foods such as nuts, pretzels, and chips can all scratch the tissue if you aren’t careful. So if you have a history of canker sores already, it’s best to avoid these items or at least consume them less frequently.

3. Get the right vitamins in your diet.

There are several key vitamins and minerals that help prevent canker sores. Vitamin B-12 can aid in both prevention and healing. Zinc is also helpful, with zinc lozenges being an easy way to boost your immune system and prevent canker sores.

4. Use a saltwater rinse.

A saltwater rinse can be highly effective in providing immediate relief. You can dissolve about a teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water to make the rinse. Swish the solution around in your mouth for 30 seconds and then spit it out. You can repeat this every few hours for continuous relief.

5. Alleviate pain with honey.

Certain foods can help provide relief, with honey being a prime example. Honey has a variety of antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties and is an ingredient in many natural remedies. Applying honey directly to the sore several times each day can provide relief and speed up the healing process.

6. Reduce stress in your life.

Stress is one of the most significant factors in canker sore development. Individuals with high stress levels are more likely to experience recurring sores. You can work to prevent canker sores by reducing stress in your life. Taking more personal time, implementing regular exercise, and spending time with friends and family can all help drastically.

7. Take steps to deal with irritation from braces and other appliances.

Canker sores often arise from small cuts or other injuries inside the mouth. If you have braces or other types of oral appliances, they could cause small cuts or irritation where they rub against the inside of your mouth. One way to prevent this is by using orthodontic wax to cover sharp edges. If you have trouble keeping the sharp area covered, visit your dentist so they can make any necessary adjustments..

Ask your dentist about more options.

If you’ve noticed a painful sore inside your mouth, you should visit your Bedford dental clinic to find out whether you need treatment. While most canker sores don’t require any action, major canker sores could call for prescription medication to relieve pain and speed healing. You can visit us at Davis Family Dental Care for any of your dental needs.