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Canker Sores Causes & Risks


No one knows what causes aphthous ulcers. It is a common misconception that they are a form of the herpes virus.

Unlike herpes, aphthous ulcers cannot spread from one person to another. They are thought to result from a reaction of the immune system. They tend to occur more often in women than in men. The first instance tends to occur between the ages of 10 to 40.

The following conditions may make certain people more prone to developing these mouth sores:

  • Stress or trauma in the mouth, such as biting the tongue
  • Certain foods (especially acidic foods, such as tomatoes and pineapples)
  • Family history
  • Changes in hormone levels

Risk Factors

The following may increase your chances of developing aphthous ulcers. If you have any of these risk factors, tell your doctor:

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2020 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

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