Causes, Symptoms and Treatment of Canker Sores

Canker sores are very common. These painful sores usually appear on the tongue, gums or the inside walls of the cheeks. When you have this oral condition, it can be very difficult to chew, eat or speak.

You can easily tell if you’re about to have one because you’ll feel a burning or tingling sensation in your mouth, particularly in the spot where the canker sores are about to appear. As it matures, these oral sores will have a red edge, resulting from its inflamed state. Most canker sores appear as round with a white or greyish hue in its middle. In severe cases, canker sores can bring about physical sluggishness, swelling in the lymph nodes and fever.

The common causes of canker sores include stress and trauma to the soft tissues in the mouth. Nutritional deficiencies in iron, folic acid, zinc and vitamin B-complex can also result in having these sores. Canker sores may also appear as a result in having a weakened immune system.

Generally canker sores go away after a week or two without need of treatment; the pain, on the other hand, will subside in just a few days from the time it was first felt. In cases where treatment is required, dental lasers offer an almost-immediate relief.

Unfortunately canker sores are not something that can be prevented. Although you can minimize the likelihood of having them. To reduce the risk of having these painful sores, here are a couple of tips you can use:

  • Chewing sugarless gum can help you avoid irritation
  • Cut down on citric fruits and veggies
  • Lay off the spicy food once in a while
  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush
  • Avoid ill-fitting dental braces or dentures


If you’re having unusually large sores (as when they last for more than 3 weeks or spreading uncontrollably inside the mouth), speak with your dentist. When there is intolerable pain or if accompanied by fever, seek medical help immediately.


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Drs. Jay Grossman, Melissa Glazer, Frankie Neman, Barry Weichman and Justin Raanan at Concierge Dentistry offer Cosmetic Dentistry (precision veneers & Lumineers®, in-office teeth whitening, porcelain crowns), Invisalign® (Invisalign Elite Preferred Provider), Endodontics (root canal therapy & retreatment), Restorative Dentistry (complex oral reconstructions, CEREC® same-day crowns, dental implant restorations), Implants (single-tooth replacement, full upper or lower archreplacement, implant-supported dentures) and Periodontics (implant placement, periodontal care, preventive care, laser gum treatment & Waterlase®, nutrition counseling). Concierge Dentistry serve the communities of Los Angeles including Brentwood, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Culver City, Westwood, Hollywood, Glendale, Sherman Oaks, Burbank, Woodland Hills and Calabasas.