Mouth Sores, their Treatment, and Prevention
If you have noticed yellowish or reddish sores on your tongue, this could be a sign that you have canker sores, also known as mouth sores, mouth ulcers or tongue blisters.
You can recognize canker sores by the yellowish, almost white color, surrounded by a reddened area. The blisters may be located on or underneath your tongue. Mouth sores can be inflamed, painful, and cause discomfort while eating or drinking. Also, mouth ulcers can spread onto the gums causing gum sores with similar symptoms.
Major symptoms of mouth sores
According to WebMD, tongue blisters can be of 2 types – simple and complex sores. Simple mouth sores may remain for about 7 days, and can occur up to 3-4 times per year. Usually, they affect individuals aged from 10 to 20 years old. The less common, complex tongue blisters are more likely to affect people who have already had them. They may last up to a few weeks.
Canker sores can be confused with cold sores. The difference is that canker sores develop inside the mouth, mostly on the tongue, the insides of the cheeks, and gums, while cold sores appear on the lips, outside of the mouth. 2-3 days prior to tongue blisters, you may feel tingling inside the mouth where the sore is developing.
Because these sores can occur while you’re sick or your immune system is compromised, other symptoms of mouth sores with blisters on the tongue include:
- Swollen lymph glands.
What causes mouth sores?
According to the Mayo Clinic staff, tongue blisters can be caused by different factors including:
- Allergies to some foods – eggs, cheese, acidic fruits, nuts, etc.;
- Allergic reactions to the natural bacteria living in the mouth;
- Minor tongue injuries like the sharp teeth, poorly fitted dental fixtures, accidental biting, teeth grinding, etc;
- Mineral deficiencies of iron, zinc, Vitamin B12, and folic acid;
- Bacterial infections inside the mouth;
- Celiac disease;
- Ulcerative colitis and other bowel disorders;
- Autoimmune disorders;
- Toothpaste and other oral hygiene products containing the harsh irritating substances.
Medical treatment for canker sores
If you are wondering how to treat canker sores on your tongue, you may try one of the following medical guidelines given by health care specialists:
- Mouth sores treatment can be initiated by drinking an ice slurry. Ice may numb the tongue, reducing the pain for a short time;
- Over-the-counter (OTC) mouth ulcer medicines containing benzocaine – a local anesthetic for a longer pain relief. You can choose among Orajel, Anbesol, Zilactin-B, and other brand drugs in this category;
- Alternatively, as a mouth sore medicine, you can use Canker Cover, Canker-X or similar protective drugs which provides a numbing effect along with reducing the inflammation and kill the bacteria;
- Some people claim that Aspirin may work as the best tongue sores treatment. You may put an uncoated Aspirin tablet on the tongue and wait until it dissolves completely. Allegedly, Aspirin can give an immediate relief for the sore mouth and tongue after dissolving.
Home remedies for mouth sores
Instead of using medicine for canker sores, you may try some natural remedies for canker sores that may be helpful and fast-acting:
Grapefruit seed extract may work as a good mouth sore remedy because of its natural disinfecting properties. Try rinsing the mouth daily with the mixture of a few drops of grapefruit seed extract added to a glass of distilled water.
Chamomile may soothe the inflammation and pain. You can prepare this tea by adding 3 tablespoons of dried chamomile flowers to boiling water. Let it cool for 10 minutes, then strain and drink throughout the day.
Calendula is another popular mouth ulcer remedy that may prevent the development of new ulcers and relieve pain from the tongue blisters. You can make this natural gargle by mixing 2 teaspoons of calendula in a cup of distilled water. Then you need to boil the mixture, let it steep for a few minutes, filter and only then gargle. Repeat the gargle 3-4 times throughout the day.
Thanks to its science-backed antibacterial properties, you may apply Aloe Vera gel. Consider following this recipe:
- Cut the leaf to extract the pure Aloe Vera gel;
- Apply the gel on the tongue sores for 5 minutes;
- Rinse the mouth with warm water;
- Repeat the remedy a few times throughout the day, during 4 days.
Dietary tips for the treatment of tongue lesions
While treating canker sores on your tongue and mouth, you may consider changing your dietary habits. Try including the following foods in your daily diet:
- Yogurt can speed up the mouth and tongue recovery;
- Foods rich in B vitamins like green leafy vegetables and whole grains may prevent the repetitive outbreaks of tongue sores.
- Kiwi fruit may be also helpful as a natural canker sore cure because of the high content of Vitamin C and bioflavonoids;
- Soft cooked grains;
- Steamed vegetables;
- Carrot juice;
Also, health care specialists recommend drinking lots of cold water to numb the tongue. Instead of water, you can drink cold milk or fruit juices. Try not to drink hot drinks. To prevent the inflammation and irritation of the tongue sores, consider avoiding any citrus fruits, caffeine, spices, salty foods, sweets, and oily foods.
Tips for quick canker sore relief
- Try not to scratch the tongue blisters with the teeth;
- Good oral hygiene is important if you want to achieve a quick mouth ulcer treatment – that is why try brushing your teeth regularly and using mouthwash is important as well;
- Try applying the oil from Vitamin E capsules directly on the tongue blisters to speed up the recovery;
- Try choosing a toothpaste that doesn’t have foaming agents in its content, particularly sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS).
Commonly, a home cure for canker sores can be enough to treat this problem successful. However, consider seeking medical assistance if the tongue blisters last longer than 3 weeks and new sores continue to appear causing severe pain, high fever, and difficulties in moving the tongue.