Why do I keep getting canker sores?

Oral health problems don’t always involve the teeth or the gums. The best dentists in Carrollton often evaluate patients for problems involving other tissues of the mouth, such as the lips, inner cheeks or tongue.

One such oral health concern is canker sores, which are tender spots on the inner tissues of the mouth, and repeated outbreaks of the sores can send a patient to a dentist for effective treatment.

Canker sores can be caused by a number of factors, including stress, heavy consumption of acidic foods and irritation from dental appliances, like braces. Deficiencies in certain vitamins and minerals or immunosuppression can contribute to canker sores, which may also be idiopathic. That means that their cause cannot be identified.

In addition to examining the sores, your dentist will also review your lifestyle habits to see if they may be contributing to the problem. Part of the treatment may involve behavioral adjustments, like stress management or eliminating trigger foods from your diet. A dentist may also recommend more frequent brushing to remove debris from offensive foods for patients who often develop canker sores.

Canker sores often resolve on their own, but patients may need to seek treatment from a dentist in cases of persistent pain or particularly large sores. Effective treatments may be over-the-counter solutions or prescription ointments or mouthwashes.

Although they may be similar in appearance, canker sores are distinct from cold sores, which are caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus and are highly contagious. Canker sores cannot be passed from person to person. Canker sores also generally occur on the inner surfaces of the mouth, while cold sores are found on the exterior surfaces of the mouth, like the lips.

If you have been suffering from frequent canker sores, discuss the problem with your dentist to learn if you can make any adjustments to reduce your chances of outbreaks. When canker sores are particularly painful or large, the dentist can prescribe a special mouthwash or ointment to relieve your symptoms as well.