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Category: Prevention and Wellness
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Understanding Mouth Ulcers and Mouth Ulcer Symptoms

Mouth ulcers, also commonly referred to as mouth sores or canker sores, are painful mouth ulcers that develop inside the mouth. These lesions typically manifest as small, round or oval mouth ulcers with a red border and a white or yellowish centre. Mouth ulcers and mouth sores can be quite painful and uncomfortable, affecting your ability to eat, drink, or talk comfortably.

Common mouth ulcer symptoms encompass a range of discomforts, including pain or discomfort when eating, drinking, or speaking. The affected area often becomes tender and sensitive to touch. Interestingly, ulcer symptoms might also include a tingling or burning sensation before an ulcer fully develops. These painful mouth sores can surface on various parts inside the mouth, such as the tongue, inner cheeks, gums, and even the roof of the mouth. Although mouth ulcers typically heal independently within 1-2 weeks, there are effective home remedies for mouth ulcers that can expedite the healing process and alleviate the associated discomfort.

Here, we present ten home remedies to help manage and alleviate mouth ulcer symptoms:

Salt Water Gargle

A salt water gargle is a well-known home remedy for mouth ulcers. Dissolve a teaspoon of salt in warm water and perform a 30-second gargle with the solution before spitting it out. This simple practice can help reduce inflammation and maintain cleanliness in the affected area.


Another natural remedy for mouth ulcers is honey. Apply a small amount of raw organic honey directly to the sore. Honey possesses natural antibacterial properties and can aid in soothing and healing wounds.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is a valuable home remedy for mouth ulcers due to its remarkable healing properties. Apply a small amount of coconut oil to the surface of the sore or consider applying it before bedtime. Similar to honey, coconut oil boasts antibacterial properties that assist in naturally reducing mouth sores. Furthermore, it acts as an anti-inflammatory, offering relief from mouth ulcer symptoms.

Aloe Vera Gel

Aloe vera also possesses soothing properties and can contribute to healing. Applying fresh aloe vera gel directly to the mouth sores can help alleviate mouth ulcer symptoms.

Chrysanthemum Tea

Chamomile contains anti-inflammatory properties and serves as a valuable home remedy for mouth ulcers. It can reduce pain and inflammation associated with these sores. Soak a chamomile tea bag in hot water, allow it to cool, and gently apply the damp tea bag directly to the wound for several minutes.

Baking Soda Powder

Baking soda is another effective home remedy for mouth ulcers as it helps neutralise the acidic environment in the mouth, promoting wound healing. Create a paste by mixing a small amount of baking soda with water, apply the mixture to the sores, and leave it on for a few minutes before rinsing it off.

Orange Juice

Oranges, rich in vitamin C, are known to prevent and soothe sores. However, consuming whole oranges can be challenging when experiencing these ulcers. A practical remedy for mouth sores is to consume two glasses of freshly squeezed orange juice daily.

Turmeric Powder

Turmeric is a potent antiseptic that fights infection and alleviates inflammation and pain associated with ulcers. Its antibacterial properties make it a valuable home remedy for mouth ulcer symptoms. Mix turmeric powder with water to form a thick paste and apply it to the mouth sores in the morning and evening. Rinse it off after several minutes.

Clove Essential Oil

Clove oil contains eugenol, which acts as a natural anaesthetic, providing temporary pain relief. Dip a cotton ball in clove oil and gently apply it to the sores to alleviate mouth ulcer symptoms.


Ice can help numb the area and reduce inflammation. Applying ice directly to the sore can alleviate the discomfort associated with mouth ulcer symptoms.

Understanding the mouth ulcer causes and triggers is equally important as knowing how to manage these painful mouth sores effectively.

What Causes Mouth Ulcers?

Mouth ulcer causes can result from a combination of factors, including genetics, immune system responses, and environmental triggers. While the exact cause is not always clear, several contributing factors have been identified as mouth ulcer causes:

  • Trauma or Injury: Minor injuries to the soft tissues of the mouth, such as accidental biting on the cheek, using a stiff-bristled toothbrush, or dental procedures that irritate the tissues, can lead to the development of ulcers.
  • Stress:
    Emotional stress and anxiety can weaken the immune system’s response, making the body more susceptible to sores.
  • Dietary Factors:
    Certain foods, especially those that are highly acidic or have sharp edges, can trigger the formation of ulcers. Spicy, sour, or salty foods, as well as citrus fruits, chocolate, and nuts, are known to contribute to the development of ulcers in some people and are mouth ulcer causes.
  • Nutritional Deficiencies:
    A lack of essential nutrients, such as vitamin B12, folic acid, iron, or zinc, can lead to an increased risk of mouth ulcers and are considered mouth ulcer causes.
  • Immune System Abnormalities:
    A malfunctioning immune system can cause the body to mistakenly attack its cells, including those in the soft tissues of the mouth, leading to the formation of sores and mouth ulcer symptoms.
  • Hormonal Changes:
    Some individuals may develop mouth ulcers during periods of hormonal fluctuations, such as menstruation.
  • Certain Medical Conditions:
    Conditions such as celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, and Bechet’s disease fall within the spectrum of mouth ulcer causes.
  • Smoking and Tobacco Consumption:
    Tobacco use, including smoking and chewing tobacco, can irritate oral tissue and increase the risk of mouth sores.
  • Genes:
    Family history and genetic predisposition can play a role in determining an individual’s susceptibility to developing mouth ulcers.
  • Certain Drugs:
    Some medications, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), beta blockers, and certain antibiotics, can contribute to the development of ulcers in some people.