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Canker Sores (cont.)

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What is the treatment for canker sores?

In most cases, canker sores do not require any treatment. If a person already has a canker sore, there are steps that can be taken to help relieve the pain or irritation caused by the sore and speed healing:

  • Topical medications applied directly on the sore, mouthwashes, and oral medications can relieve pain or inflammation.
  • Avoid acidic foods such as citrus fruits or spicy foods that may aggravate the sore.
  • If there is any vitamin deficiency (a doctor can test for this), take supplementation as prescribed.
  • Brush teeth gently and use a brush with soft bristles.
  • Use toothpaste and mouthwash that does not contain sodium lauryl sulfate.
  • Another home remedy is to mix milk of magnesia with Benadryl liquid and use as a mouth rinse.
  • Other natural remedies include goldenseal mouth rinse, deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL) gargled in warm water, and saltwater rinses.

What kind of topical medications (gels or ointments) are available for canker sores?

Topical gels or ointments are used for canker sores to relieve pain, decrease inflammation, and prevent infection.

  • Topical pain medications: Gels such as benzocaine (Oragel) and lidocaine (an anesthetic) are used directly on the canker sore to relieve pain or discomfort. These types of medications can be found over the counter.
  • Topical anti-inflammatory medications: Steroid medications can be used topically to decrease inflammation from canker sores. These medications usually require a prescription and should be used exactly as directed.
  • Topical antibiotics: These medications may be prescribed by your doctor or dentist if there is a possibility of the canker sore becoming infected with bacteria. Redness, crusting, pus discharge, or fever are signs of infection.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/9/2014

Patient Comments

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Canker Sores - Effective Treatments Question: Please describe what treatments have been effective for your canker sores.
Canker Sores - Symptoms Question: What were the symptoms of your canker sores?
Canker Sores - Topical Medications Question: What topical medications have been effective treatments for your canker sores?
Canker Sores - Oral Medications Question: Which medications have you tried for pain or to treat your canker sores? What would you recommend?
Canker Sores - Experience Question: Please describe your experience with canker sores.
Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/canker_sores/article.htm

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