Mouth sores are painful ulcers found on the cheeks, lips, gums, tongue, bottom of the mouth, and the soft palate. These sores can be caused by a variety of factors, ranging from stress to gastrointestinal diseases. Mouth sore symptoms typically include a burning or tingling sensation inside the mouth followed by painful, sensitive ulcers. In more severe cases, mouth sores can be accompanied by swollen lymph nodes, physical fatigue, and fever.
What Causes Mouth Sores?
Common mouth sore causes include: biting your tongue, lip, or cheek; burning your mouth when attempting to eat hot food or beverages; or tissue trauma from braces, dentures, and other potentially sharp objects. Mouth sores can also be related to the consumption of acidic foods and drinks.
Canker Sores Causes
There is no known cause for canker sores. They appear as pale gray ulcers with a red outer ring. Unlike cold sores, for which they are sometimes mistaken, canker sores are not contagious, but are though to be brought on by a variety of triggers, including:
- Weakened immune system (due to a viral infection)
- Hormonal changes
- Sensitivity to acidic foods
- Poor diet lacking in certain vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin B12
- Sodium lauryl sulfate (found in toothpastes and mouthwashes)
Research has also associated canker sores with several inflammatory diseases like Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, Celiac disease, and Behcet’s disease, plus diseases related to a suppressed immune system, such as HIV/AIDS.
Cold Sores Causes
Cold sores appear as small fluid-filled ulcers around the lips. They are caused by the herpes simplex virus and are extremely contagious. The virus can lay dormant for years after the initial infection, but can reappear as cold sores triggered by:
- Weakened immune system
- Sun exposure
- Hormone changes
Cold sore symptoms include an initial itching/tingling sensation around the lips, a breakout of small blisters, oozing fluid following a burst blister, and finally a crusting over.
Mouth Sores from Braces
It’s not just your teeth that need to adjust to dental braces. If you’ve recently had braces installed or adjusted, mouth sores can become an all-too-real annoyance. Normal, daily activities can become very painful.
One essential for treating mouth sores from braces: orthodontist wax. Applying this wax (usually given to you by your orthodontist, but also available at pharmacies) to your braces can help prevent mouth ulcers from getting worse, though it is not designed to relieve pain or quicken the healing process.
Mouth Sores from Dentures
Similar to braces, new dentures or older dentures that no longer fit correctly can rub against your gums or inner mouth, causing painful mouth sores. If you’ve developed mouth sores with new or ill-fitting dentures, be sure to talk to your dentist about possible adjustments and other treatments for temporary pain relief.
Mouth Sores Treatment
Most mouth sores heal without treatment in 10-14 days, but there are a variety of over-the-counter medications, like H-B12 Melts®, that can lessen the pain and support natural healing*. There are also several home remedies for mouth sores, including:
- Gargle salt water
- Create paste of baking soda and water and apply to ulcer
- Avoid triggers like hot, spicy, salty, or acidic foods and beverages
OraCoat H-B12 Melts for Mouth Sore Relief
Beyond home remedies, products like H-B12 Melts offer relief from temporary pain caused by canker sores and other mouth ulcers. H-B12 Melts work by adhering to gums, teeth, braces or dentures for several hours before fully dissolving.
H-B12 Melts feature bioactive vitamin B12 to promote natural healing and support a healthy mouth lining*. The OraMelts™ are simple to use and work well with braces and dentures. Be sure to relax, eat a well-balanced diet, and use H-B12 Melts to find relief from painful mouth sores.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.