What are ulcers?
Mouth ulcers are often small annoying gray / white or yellowish spots with a red border around it and can be very painful. They are usually in the mouth, so especially with cheeks, lips or under the tongue. The precise number can vary from a few to many ulcers at the same time. There are, therefore, many different types of ulcers, but in general they are here:
- It can be located inside of your cheeks.
- They can be on your lips.
- They can also be on your palate.
- Mouth ulcers can also be found under your tongue.
Because of this enormous pain, eating and drinking often becomes more difficult.
About 20% of people have ever had mouth ulcers. Research shows that after the age of 40, ulcers occur less and less.
What are the causes of those ulcers?
The cause of the onset of the ulcers is unknown, so we suspect that they are more easily caused by the following:
- Wounds in your mouth that can come from the following things:
- Biting on your cheek.
- Brushing and flossing.
- Dentures that do not fit well, for example due to a sharp prosthetic edge or a prosthetic edge that is too long.
- Stress could also play a role.
- Usually changes in the hormones also play a role, for example during periods.
- It may also be a genetic predisposition, what does this mean? This means that there are many people in your family who also have ulcers.
- Viruses or bacteria that can be in your mouth. Usually inflammation only gets a chance with reduced resistance. When using some medications, particularly those that suppress the immune system, ulcers regularly occur as a side effect.
- Chronic disorders that affect overall condition, making the mouth more susceptible to infections. Examples of this are (small) intestinal disorders such as celiac disease (gluten intolerance) and crohn’s disease. When the absorption of important nutrients is reduced, the condition and resistance of a patient can be affected. This can cause complaints and inflammations elsewhere in the body, for example in the oral cavity.
- In some cases, another gastrointestinal disease is the cause of ulcers. If you often suffer from ulcers and also regularly have other gastrointestinal complaints, you can discuss this with your doctor. Diseases such as celiac disease (gluten intolerance), Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis (chronic intestinal inflammation) may then be the cause.
- And occasionally you may also lack an iron, vitamin B12, or folic acid in your blood.
Are ulcers malignant?
No mouth ulcers are not dangerous or harmful, fortunately they can do no harm to humans. They are therefore also not contagious and they do not cause permanent health damage.
What can you do about mouth ulcers?
Do you have little or no problems with ulcers? Then you don’t have to do anything about it. It usually goes away within 1 to 2 weeks.
Do you have a huge burden with this? Then the following advice can help you very well:
- Do not eat spicy food.
- Do not eat hard food or food with sharp edges, such as toast.
- Eat carefully and take your time.
- Do not drink sour drinks such as soft drinks and orange juice, as acids can cause a lot of pain in your mouth.
- Brush your teeth very carefully with a very soft toothbrush (soft toothbrush hairs), take your time and do it as gently as possible, what I recommend is that you can use a toothbrush with a small head, so you can easily reach your teeth anywhere and choose while brushing, so you do not damage the ulcers and they can heal faster.
- Do not touch them with your fingers, tongue or toothbrush, or with other things, if you do, it will get irritated.
Do you often have ulcers?
- Try to look and discover what exactly makes the mouth Are you brushing too rough? Do you get them after certain food or drinks? Then try not to do or eat these things anymore.
- What might be very useful for you is that a diary would be a great help, so you write down what you ate or drank every day. Do you still get a ulcer? Then you can read back what you ate or drank those days before, so this could be the cause. This way you can see what you shouldn’t eat or drink next time.
- Ensuring good resistance is very important.
- Eat very well and healthy.
- You must ensure that you have enough relaxation, exercise and enough sleep are also important.
- What I have often seen and heard from people is that they take (Multi) vitamins, this does not help to prevent this type of vitamins are useless.
- Brush your teeth very quietly with a soft brush with soft hair and a small head so that you can reach everything more easily. This way you prevent wounds that can cause ulcers.
- What I also recommend is that you go to the dentist twice a year or to a dental hygienist. During the check-up visit show what is bothering you, have your mouth carefully checked if there are sharp teeth on your teeth and molars, for example there may be a sharp filling, this can be fixed by the dentist for you. What is also possible is that you try toothpaste with enzymes that this may help you! You can of course buy that toothpaste from your drugstore or pharmacy.
Which medicines really help with ulcers?
- What you can use is a paracetamol, but look at the packaging for the dosage.
- A mouth gel with lidocaine. This is a very handy gel. This is for sale at the pharmacy and it reduces pain.
- Try it gently on your mouth, they lubricate, for example, you do this before you eat. This makes eating less painful, so you can eat more easily. What I naturally recommend is that you read the package leaflet as accurately as possible for this gel.
- Chlorhexidine during mouthwash This is also for sale at the pharmacy. The rinse ensures that the bacteria in your mouth are killed.
- You must first maintain the base, so first brush your teeth with a soft toothbrush, this is to ensure that there is no discoloration (this is how you prevent it).
- Then rinse your mouth with the rinse for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Spit it out immediately afterwards.
- Do this twice a day (I assume that you brush your teeth twice a day, hence rinsing twice with the rinse). The rinse can discolour your tongue and teeth brown, so don’t be shocked by this, because the discoloration usually disappears by itself. The dentist can also remove the discoloration if you like. Have you just had tea, coffee, or red wine? Then your teeth can cause extra discoloration, and that is why brushing is very important before you rinse.
How does it go on with ulcers?
The healing of the ulcers usually takes 1 to 2 weeks, it heals by itself.
But do you notice that the ulcers are larger than 1 cm? Then it can unfortunately take a little longer.
Mouth ulcers can also come back, try to avoid the things I mentioned above.
When can you go to the doctor?
Call or visit your doctor if you have a fever and feel sick and if your mouth ulcers do not heal within 2 weeks.
More information about mouth ulcers?
Do you have questions about mouth ulcers? You can always reach us via email! I hope I have been able to help you with this. Don’t forget to share this post with friends and to like! 😉