Canker sores usually heal by themselves in 14 days without any treatment. Various treatments are only useful to relieve the pain of the sores. People with canker sores can rinse their mouth with salt water. Avoiding hot and spicy foods also helps to minimize pain.
You can help prevent canker sores by making sure you're not deficient in folic acid or vitamin B12. If injury or irritation to the mouth causes canker sores, it is important to remove any sources of irritation, such as ill-fitting dentures.
There are many pain relievers for canker sores. Viscous lidocaine* is an anesthetic that can be applied to the sore or used to rinse the mouth to numb the pain. Although it relieves pain, it may interfere with a person's sense of taste. Carboxymethylcellulose is a protective coating that can also be put on the sore to relieve pain. Benzydamine mouthwash can provide temporary relief from the pain of canker sores. None of these options speed up healing. Silver nitrate can also be applied to the sore to relieve pain, but it may cause discoloration where it is applied and may delay healing.
If you tend to have a lot of canker sores, or they keep coming back, it is a good idea to see a dentist or doctor. The dentist or doctor can prescribe a antibacterial mouthwash that can be used as soon as a new sore starts developing.
Severe canker sores may be rubbed with a corticosteroid ointment, available by prescription only. They may also be treated with a medication called dexamethasone in a mouth rinse, or prednisone taken as tablets.
If you have continuous or very severe canker sores, it is best to see a specialist in oral medicine. Treatment may require long-term use of steroids, immunosuppressants, or injections of steroids into the lesions.
*All medications have both common (generic) and brand names. The brand name is what a specific manufacturer calls the product (e.g., Tylenol®). The common name is the medical name for the medication (e.g., acetaminophen). A medication may have many brand names, but only one common name. This article lists medications by their common names. For information on a given medication, check our Drug Information database. For more information on brand names, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2017. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/condition/getcondition/Canker-Sores