Anyone who has ever had a canker sore will tell you that these tiny mouth sores are not only painful, but they’re also persistent little buggers that often only show up at the worst time imaginable. When they appear, these sores, which also go by the name “aphthous ulcers,” can be found under or on the tongue as well as inside the lips or cheeks—meaning the moveable sections of your mouth are the parts likely to be affected.
Typically, you should get just one canker sore at a time, but they do sometimes show up in clusters. While they will usually fade without assistance within a few weeks, sometimes you just don’t want to suffer through canker sores for all that time. With that, here are several natural remedies to try out!
Rinsing with Salt Water Solution
When you swish salt water around in your mouth, you’re reducing bacteria by briefly increasing the mouth’s pH balance and therefore causing a more alkaline environment to develop where bacteria have trouble surviving. Similarly, because it’s isotonic, salt water won’t irritate the mouth’s mucous membranes as mouthwash might.
Applying Aloe Vera
If you apply aloe vera onto canker sores directly using Q-tips, this should help reduce inflammation and soothe irritation. However, it’s probably better to use aloe vera fresh from the actual plant.
Drinking Manuka Honey-Chamomile Tea
Historical records have indicated that honey and chamomile were both used for medicinal purposes for centuries due to their alleged ability to kill bacteria and reduce inflammation and pain. Manuka honey can be directly applied to a canker sore or combined with chamomile tea to use for a rinse.
Using Clove Oil for Numbing the Area
In terms of natural remedies, clove oil is a popular option for relieving pain and can be used simply. Rinse your mouth first using a mouthwash or sea salt solution before applying pure clove oil on cotton wool directly onto the canker sore in order to numb any pain you feel.
When You Should Go to the Doctor
When canker sores extend beyond a normal several-week period or the sores are unusually large, frequently recurring, extend to the lips’ outer edges, or cause immense difficulty during swallowing or eating, you need to schedule a doctor’s visit. It’s possible you have sharp teeth surfaces or a dental appliance that’s triggering the canker sores or even a vitamin B12 deficiency. Regardless, your doctor can figure out what is going on and work directly with you in order to solve the issue.
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Photo By Dutko