Reduce Your Risk of Painful Mouth Ulcers

September 23, 2017
Posted By: Dr. Wei-Yen Chang

The cause of mouth ulcers is still currently unknown and may vary widely from person to person. But one thing we’re sure of – they are annoying and painful and can make it difficult for you to eat, speak, drink, and brush your teeth.

Types of Mouth Ulcers

Mouth ulcers, also called canker sores, appear in the mouth and gums, and there are three main types:

  • Herpetiform ulcers are so named because they look like herpes sores, BUT unlike herpes, these ulcers are not contagious. HU ulcers tend to recur quickly, making it seem like the condition never gets better.
  • Minor ulcers cause minimal pain and take about two weeks to clear up.
  • Major ulcers are larger than minor ulcers and penetrate deeper in the tissue. They linger for several weeks and may leave scarring.

How to Avoid Mouth Ulcers

While it’s unclear what causes mouth ulcers, we do know what factors aggravate them, make them more painful, and cause them to linger. If you want to avoid ulcers or minimize the outbreak, here are a few steps you should take:

  • Stop smoking – You know there are already many good reasons to quit, and irritating a mouth ulcer is another. If you can’t quit, consider cutting way back when you are having an outbreak.
  • Avoid citrus fruit and other food and drinks that are spicy or high in acid.
  • Check to see that your braces or dentures fit properly. Both can cause irritation in the mouth and potentially lead to mouth ulcers.
  • Talk to your physician about the medications you take. Beta blockers and some painkillers make outbreaks more common.

Call Us for An Appointment

Our goal is to provide you with information that helps you understand certain oral health conditions and how they affect you. If you would like to talk to us about mouth ulcers or if you have any other questions, please call Temple, TX dentist Dr. Richard Leung to arrange an appointment at your convenience.

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