Mouth Ulcers :
Mouth ulcers are usually harmless and clear up within a week or so. Ulcers can be painful but can be managed at home or by seeing your dentist. One has to see a dentist if a mouth ulcer lasts longer than two weeks.
Mouth ulcers are round or oval in shape and appear inside the mouth on cheeks, lips and on the tongue.
Mouth ulcers color can vary from red, white to yellow. They can appear as a single ulcer or come in groups.Mouth ulcers can be confused with cold sores that usually begin with a tingling sensation but their itching and burning sensation are different from mouth ulcers.
These mouth ulcers are usually painful and uncomfortable when eating or drinking. Brushing the gums can also cause pain hence a soft brush should be used during a mouth ulcer period. Mouth ulcers can be a sign of bacterial infection if they appear many times or if they last more than three weeks. These ulcers can be also a symptom of a virus that mainly affects younger kids ( Hand, foot and mouth disease ). Any treatment for mouth ulcers should be towards reducing the swelling and ease of discomfort. Reducing mouth ulcers symptoms will help you eat and drink better. To speed up the healing you may:
Apply a toothpaste recommended by your dentist or doctor.
Use only a soft toothbrush like Oral-B nr 40 ( very soft toothbrush )
Using a straw to drink cold drinks.
Avoid eating spicy and salty food.
Several treatment remedies are available in your chemists such as antimicrobial mouthwash, pain killers, and corticosteroid creams. The painkillers are in form of mouthwash, gel or spray.They usually sting at the first use but becomes a great help after first few seconds.Any mouthwash with chlorhexidine gluconate will help to reduce the mouth ulcers greatly. Corticosteroids should never be used by children of 12 years or younger.
Three types of mouth ulcers are common in the mouth:
Minor aphthous ulcers: Eight out of ten mouth ulcers are aphthous ulcers.They are small, round or oval and rarely are bigger than 10 millimeters in diameter. They are usually pale and yellow but can become red and inflamed. One ulcer and up to five can appear at the same time, usually lasting 7 to 10 days and never leave a scar.These scars are not usually painful.
Major aphthous ulcers occur one in every ten cases. They are usually about one centimeter in diameter or larger but only appear one or two at the most.These major aphthous ulcers last between 2 weeks to few months and leave a scar in the mouth. These ulcers are usually very painful.
Another form of ulcers is called herpetiform ulcers with tiny pinhead sized (1-2 mm ) across.These ulcers can join together and form an irregular shape, They last from one week to few months and can be mistaken with the herpes virus.