Canker sores are the most common type of mouth ulcer that is generally open and painful. They can appear inside the mouth on one’s lips or cheeks. The sore itself is typically white or yellow in the center and is then encompassed by red, inflamed tissue. While it is unknown what exactly causes canker sores, there are a number of suggested causes. The following outlines the top 10 causes of canker sores:
Stress is known to have numerous negative effects on one’s body which can include your mouth. Stress is a possible cause for the development of simple canker sores.
- Mouth Injury
An injury to the mouth or mouth tissue could have the potential to cause canker sores.
There are particular foods that may cause canker sores. Typically, foods that are more acidic or spicy are known to cause canker sores or worsen them. Foods such as lemons, pineapples, apples, tomatoes, strawberries, chocolate, coffee, eggs, nuts and cheese can possibly trigger a canker sore.
- Sharp Objects
Sharp objects in or around one’s mouth may be a potential cause of canker sores. Examples such as braces, misfit dentures, or a sharp surface on one’s tooth are all possible causes.
- Health Issues
An underlying health condition or an impaired immune system may be causes for canker sores.
- Nutritional Issues
Lacking certain nutrients may correlate with the appearance of canker sores. Some of these nutrients include vitamin B-12, zinc, folic acid, or iron.
- Gastrointestinal Tract Diseases
Diseases such as celiac or Crohn’s may contribute to canker sores.
- Hormonal Fluctuations
A change in hormones may be a cause of canker sores. In women, there have been increased reports of canker sores during one’s menstrual cycle or in pregnancy.
Allergies to food or to certain bacteria in your mouth can possibly trigger canker sores.
- Certain Products
Some products such as toothpaste or mouthwash that have sodium lauryl sulfate have been known to cause canker sores.
Canker sores may be treated by contacting your dentist. Your dentist may be able to prescribe you to certain helpful mouth rinses, antibiotics, or ointments. If you have canker sores that recur or canker sores that won’t heal it is very important to see your dentist and have the lesions assessed immediately; more serious conditions such as oral cancer can resemble canker sores in the very early stages. At Pearl Dental we perform an examination of the soft tissues and cancer screen at every dental exam; this is a good time to discuss any concerns you may have about recurrent canker sores.