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Is Stress Causing my Canker Sores?

Just what you wanted – another canker sore! At our Boston office, we often see patients who suffer from canker sores. Why do they keep popping up and what can you do to help them go away as quickly as possible?

Bottom Lip Canker Sore Close Up

Canker Sore. Image retrieved from Toshiyuki IMAI on Flickr

Canker sores aren’t like cold sores. They’re smaller ulcers or mouth sores that pop up in random places throughout your mouth but may still take up to 10-14 days before they go away on their own. They can be caused by:

• Acidic foods
• Irritation
• Viruses
• Nutrition
…And stress!

Erasing & Getting Rid of Stress

Image courtesy of Alan Cleaver on Flickr

Managing Stress
Stressful lifestyles and daily demands can take a toll on our body in many ways. Not only
can it be mentally exhausting, it can also affect us physically. Consider how some people with chronic stress develop stomach ulcers. The same can be said about the ulcers inside of your mouth. Making lifestyle changes, adding meditation, and eliminating stress will not only improve your mouth – it will improve your life.

Other Treatments
If irritation from a broken tooth, braces or restoration is causing ulceration, it’s important to have that area adjusted so that it no longer causes trauma to your mouth. Mixing 1/2 milk of magnesia with1/2 liquid antihistamine and dabbing it onto the area with a cotton swab can help you achieve temporary relief. Some dentists also offer laser therapy at their office, which can provide immediate ulcer relief. Your dentist may also want to prescribe a medication to limit ulcers or reduce their recovery time.

Should you experience canker sores on a frequent basis or have had a sore or bump in your mouth that hasn’t healed within 2 weeks, you should seek professional care. Back Bay Dental Care will help you pinpoint the cause of your oral condition, screen for underlying conditions (including an oral cancer exam) and give you oral hygiene instructions to help limit your risk of flare-ups. If you have experienced 3 or more ulcers in the past 3 months, please give our office a call.

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