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blisters in mouth

By November 16, 2017 - 7:35am
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HERWriter Guide

Hello maryannecody

Thank you for writing.

Blisters in the mouth are often canker sores.

Statistics show that at least 20 percent of the population has canker sores at any given time. Other statistics indicate that women and teens are more prone to cankers than men, and that susceptibility to canker sores can be genetic and shared among family members.

What are canker sores?

Canker sores are known in the medical community as “aphthous ulcers” and they come in three classifications.

1) Minor – These make up 80 percent of reported cases of canker sores in the general population. They are usually 1-10mm in diameter and clear up within 7-10 days.

2) Major – These make up 10 percent of reported cases. These cankers sores are greater than 10mm and take between 10-30 days to resolve. There may be some scarring.

3) Herpetiform – About 10 percent of reported cases are clusters of sores with each sore less than 3mm in diameter

Cankers develop on moveable parts of the mouth – tongue, cheeks, lips, and at the base of the gums. They start out as small, red “pimples” that burst within a day. Once ruptured a thin white or yellow membrane will cover the sores. The vast majority of sores will heal within two weeks without requiring treatment and without scarring.

What causes canker sores?

No one is entirely sure what causes them in everyone, but here are some theories.

So far as researchers have been able to determine, canker sores do not appear to be caused by viruses or bacteria, although studies show that some people may develop them as an allergic reaction to a bacterium in the mouth.

They may also be the result of a faulty immune system where the body defends itself against and destroys normal mouth cells.

Studies in Britain have found that 20 per cent of occurrences happen where there are deficiencies in vitamin B12, folic acid and iron. American studies haven’t shown this connection, but it may be because of different criteria for the study subjects.

Other studies have shown a link between Vitamin C deficiency and the development of canker sores.

Some patients experience them as a gastrointestinal reaction to certain cereals.

Stress, trauma or injury to the mouth due to braces, sharp objects/food, hard toothbrushes, smoking and the presence of dentures can also result in the appearance of canker sores.

It has also been suggested that those who suffer from auto-immune disorders, such as Lupus and Crohn’s Disease, may develop canker sores as part of their condition which causes swelling or inflammation of tissues.

There were some theories about the possibility of a link between toothpastes that contain sodium lauryl sulphate (this is the ingredient that makes bubbles in most personal cleansing products: shampoo, bubble baths and shaving cream), but results of studies conducted were inconsistent.

How can you treat canker sores?

Most canker sores do not require treatment to help them clear up or heal – they usually do this on their own. But for those who don’t want to wait the 7-10 days, there are several home remedies that have been shown to be effective in addressing the discomfort.

Saltwater and baking soda rinses

- Mix 1 tsp of salt into 1 cup of warm water (1/2 tsp of backing soda may also be added)
- Swish for 30 seconds then spit


- Create a paste with the salt, baking soda and warm water and cover the area with the mixture

Repeat as required

Salt and baking soda relieve pain and help the mouth heal quickly by reducing alkalinity and bacteria in the mouth.

Hydrogen Peroxide Rinses

- Mix 1 part hydrogen peroxide with 1 part water
- Dab the solution on to the site with a cotton swab

Milk of Magnesia

Dab milk of magnesia on the site to reduce the pain and aid in healing. Particularly after hydrogen peroxide rinses.

Over-the-Counter Gels and Rinses

Orajel or Anbesol contain lidocaine and reduce pain and swelling. These are most commonly used when babies teethe, but they work for adults, too.

When choosing an oral rinse, choose one with low alcohol and sugar content.

If you do not believe your blisters are canker sores, see your doctor or dentist.


November 16, 2017 - 2:08pm
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