If you suffer from chronic canker sores, or even if you’ve only ever had one in your life, you know the discomfort and embarrassment that can result. Canker sores are a complex thing to understand, but at our dental offices, we’re here to help.
What Causes a Canker Sore?
Unfortunately, there isn’t any concrete evidence that links a direct cause with the formation of a canker sore. However, different things can trigger one in different people. Some common suspected causes include:
- Mouth injury
- Acidic food
- Ill-fitting dentures or other dental appliance
How Do You Make a Canker Sore Go Away?
Typically canker sores go away on their own after about a week or two, but sometimes that can seem like forever. If you’re looking for a quicker recovery, there are some over-the-counter products designed to relieve symptoms faster. If they don’t work or if you can’t use them, your dentist may recommend a corticosteroid or antimicrobial rinse.
Can You Prevent a Canker Sore from Coming?
There is no cure for a canker sore. You can only treat the symptoms until it runs its course. However, if you find a particular food causes you to flare up, avoid it as much as possible. Usually acidic foods are the most common culprit, but spicy foods can also be a trigger. Canker sores are also common following an injury to the soft tissues of the mouth — typically from biting yourself while chewing — so try to practice more mindful chewing.
Do You Need to See a Dentist?
Most of the time, a canker sore will heal without the need to visit a dentist. However, if you decide to use a corticosteroid or prescription-strength antimicrobial rinse, you will need to schedule an appointment. Additionally, if any of the following symptoms are present, you should consider seeing a dentist.
- Bigger-than-normal sores
- Sores that multiply
- Anything that lasts longer than three weeks
- Severe pain
If you notice any of the signs above or want to talk about your treatment options, give our offices a call. We’ll be glad to help.