Mouth sores, which create much discomfort, are open wounds in the mouth. They may be formed on the mucous membrane of the mouth on the lips, cheek, tongue, soft palate, floor of the mouth, or surrounding the mouth. They may also be formed sometimes inside the throat. Mouth ulcers are usually white in color surrounded by a red circular band. People believe that they are contagious, however, they are not. Moth ulcers may be caused because of many reasons. Here are some of them.
- Minor damages in mouth due to accidental biting inside the cheek or tongue
- Incorrect use of toothbrush and excessive brushing
- Chewing sharp or hard foods
- Allergic reactions
- Hormonal changes
- Stress and anxiety
- Deficiency of vitamin B12, folic acid, or iron
- Mouth cancer
Apart from these, they may also be formed because of vital infections such as the herpes simplex virus or hand, foot and mouth disease. Even, reaction of the autoimmune system to biological or chemical agents cause mouth ulcers. Some other causes include intestinal conditions, use of a toothpaste or mouthwash with sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS), and reactions to prescribed medications.
Certain foods such as chocolate, peanuts, coffee, strawberries, almonds, tomatoes, cheese, and wheat flour increase the likelihood of development of these ulcers. The oral ulcers may also be evident with a family history of the condition. Smoking and alcohol usage are the risk factors which increase the chances of this oral disorder.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like aspirin, mouth washes that are made of salt and warm water, iodine, or povidone, and supplements of vitamins B and C help in treating mouth ulcers. Nutrient-rich diet, quitting smoking and alcohol, and healthy oral practices can, however, avoid these ulcers.