Home Remedies for Canker Sore

Posted by on Jan 6, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Mouth painCanker sore or aphthous ulcer is a small, painful lesion in the mouth. It is the most common open sore in the mouth and it is non-contagious. Keep in mind that it is not the same as cold sore, which tends to be on the lips. Canker sore usually occurs on the soft tissues inside the mouth and it is either white or yellow with red border. Majority of the time, no treatment is required and it resolves on its own in 7-10 days. More than 20 percent of people in the U.S have canker sore in their lifetime and some people may have more than one episode. It can occur at any age but more commonly seen among teenagers and young adults.

Canker sore does not need any treatments but there are a few home remedies you can try to relieve pain and to heal faster. You can put half a teaspoon of salt into a glass of water and rinse your mouth with it. You can also mix up half water and half hydrogen peroxide, and dab the mixture directly on the sore with a cotton swab. Then, dab small amount of Milk of Magnesia on the canker sore. You can repeat this process 3-4 times a day.

Another easy remedy you can try is to make the mixture, which contains one teaspoon of Milk of Magnesia and one teaspoon of Benadryl (diphenhydramine). This time you swish the mixture in your mouth for about 60 seconds and spit it out. You can do this process for 2-3 times a day.

There are a few pastes you can apply directly to the canker sore. They contain a numbing ingredient such as benzocaine (Anbesol, Orabase, Orajel and Zilactin), fluocinonide (Vanos) and amelxanox (Aphthasol). Some are over-the-counter while others require prescription. Always check the direction on the box to see how many times you can apply in one day.

If you have severe sores, you might want to make an appointment with your doctor. He or she can prescribe you steroid mouth rinse to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. But you will be at a greater risk for fungal infection or oral thrush with steroid mouth rinse. Another mouth rinse which contains tetracycline (antibiotic) can be given for severe canker sores.

Contributed by Patricia Hsiao M.D.
Sources: emedicinehealth.com, nlm.nih.gov, mayoclinic.com, uptodate.com

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