Mouth ulcers can make simple activities like, chewing food and talking, very troublesome. Whenever they rub against the rock-hard teeth, they cause inflammation and pain. You can't even smile properly, when you are haunted by them. You have to forgo hot food and foodstuff, such as meat and chicken, which need a lot of jaw work, before, it can be engulfed. It may also put you on liquid diet.
Mouth ulcers are also called canker sores, aphthous stomatitis or aphthous ulcers; and they are not contagious. They cannot be contracted through direct contact, such as kissing or using something touched or used by the person who has them. Most of the time, they occur, when you bite yourself on the inside of the cheek. Simple activity of brushing your teeth, if done improperly, can cause mouth ulcers. The definite reason for recurrent mouth ulcers cannot be pinpointed. Few conditions that may cause it are presented below.
- Deficiency of folic acid and iron and Cyanocobalamin i.e., Vitamin B12 is often cited as the common cause of ulcer in mouth. Vitamin B12 is necessary for the absorption of iron, which is used to manufacture red blood cells (RBCs). The number of RBCs present at the site of trauma, decides the amount of oxygen supplied to the tissues in the area and the rate of recovery. Deficiency of this vitamin is also one of the mouth ulcers causes in children.
- It is believed that, approximately, 35-40% cases of recurrent mouth sores and ulcers are inherited. In an individual, if both of his parents are prone to ulcers, there is 80-90% chance of his or her having it.
- Immunosuppressant illnesses can lay you open to an attack from mouth ulcers, by lowering the effectiveness of your immune system.
- Enteritis, which is the inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, also known as the Crohn's disease, causes mouth and stomach ulcers.
- Hormonal changes that every woman has to face during the menstrual cycle may give rise to it.
- Intolerance to gluten, a protein present in wheat, rye and barley, can inflame the small intestine. This condition is named as Celiac disease, which causes mouth ulcers in adults.
- Allergy to food stuffs like lemons, oranges, pineapples, apples, figs, tomatoes, and strawberries (citrus or acidic fruits) and chocolate, coffee, peanuts, almonds, dairy products such as cheese, etc., are known to increase the risk of mouth ulcers.
- Few other causes include stress, anxiety, tuberculosis, mouth cancer, diabetes, etc.
- There is a condition called reactive arthritis which is body's response to infection that is present elsewhere in the body. There are chances that it can spread to the mouth and of causing inflammation in the form of ulcer.
- Use of certain medication such as NSAIDs (painkillers, ibuprofen and aspirin), Nicorandil or beta-blockers may also provoke a bout of mouth ulcers.
- It also seen as a symptom in health conditions such as, lichen planus and Angina bullosa haemorrhagica, pharyngitis, anemia, chickenpox and hand, foot and mouth disease.
Uncared for mouth ulcers can complicate the things and result in inflammation of the mouth (cellulitis), bacterial infection or tooth abscess. You should take medical advice, as early as possible and start canker sores treatment. After physical examination of ulcers and asking a lot of questions, he may ask you to perform certain blood tests and/or skin biopsy, reports of which helps him to arrive at a diagnosis. The doctor may also prescribe medication to relieve the inflammation.
Medicines, such as, painkillers and corticosteroids are the preferred choice to ease the pain. Most commonly used corticosteroids are triamcinolone and hydrocortisone. Over-the-counter products, that are available in a drug stores, may also prove helpful to you in relieving the discomfort. Antimicrobial mouth wash can also be used for this purpose. Follow, the instructions that are provided with the products. Some of these products should not be used for children under 16 years of age. So, if it is your child you are buying the product for, be careful.
It is necessary to undergo ulcer treatment to get rid of them and resume, eating and conversing normally. Move as early as possible against these sores to restore your smile, enjoy every mouthful and satisfy your appetite.