Thursday, March 27, 2008

Canker Sores

These seem to be an issue for my family. I have one in my mouth right now, and I can't get rid of it. I'll go ahead spare you my usual accompany photo for my post today. :)

Here's the scoop straight from WebMD:
What Causes Canker Sores?
The exact cause of most canker sores is unknown. Stress or tissue injury is thought to be the cause of simple canker sores. Certain foods – including citrus or acidic fruits and vegetables (such as lemons, oranges, pineapples, apples, figs, tomatoes, strawberries) – can trigger a canker sore or make the problem worse. Use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, like Motrin, is another common cause. Sometimes a sharp tooth surface or dental appliance, such as braces or ill-fitting dentures, might also trigger canker sores.

Some cases of complex canker sores are caused by an underlying health condition, such as an impaired immune system; nutritional problems, such as vitamin B-12, zinc, folic acid, or iron deficiency; and gastrointestinal tract disease, such as Celiac disease and Crohn's disease.

A sister in our church says that taking Lysine helps prevent them. My family always used a blue tip match by pressing the unlit tip right on the center of the sore. (You're right. It does hurt. But, the sores sure go away quickly.)

I know there have to be a ton of wives' tales and home remedies out there to get rid of them. I've seem many online today. But, do any of you have a remedy to share? (In the meantime, I'm going on a hunt for matches.)


Kelly Spezzano said...

So sorry to hear about your ailment! My mom read an article not to long ago that researches could not explain why it worked- but eating a fresh kiwi fruit is supposed to lessen the pain and heal quickly a canker or mouth sore. My father-in-law decided that he was going to try this out and was suprised by how well it worked. As I said before, this is not founded by any medical team or doctor, but several people had written in that it worked so they decided to print it. But my father-in-law is convinced! :)

mike3e said...

Alum -- the spice. It really works! (That's the spice used in Looney Tunes cartoons that is so sour/bitter that eating it results in a humorous shrinking of Wile E. Coyote's head.)

Buy some granulated (NOT POWDERED) alum, apply a small amount directly to the sore, hold it there for as long as possible, and try not to swallow.

Beth Holmes (wife of Brad, the choral director at Millikin) was the first to administer this remedy to me, believe it or not. I had multiple sores after knee surgery, probably a result of the tubes, and they were so bad I was unable to sing. Thus, Brad took matters into his own wife's hands, invited me to his house, and Beth cured me. A miracle!

Emily said...

If you're fresh out of kiwi, alum, and matches and need some relief fast, I've found that pouring/pressing some table salt straight onto the sore and leaving it there for 30-60 seconds (or until the burning goes away) helps make it more tolerable and heals faster. (Also, nothing toughens you up a bit like rubbing salt in a wound, right? HA!)

Chris said...

Hey Strem - I've had problems with these things for YEARS. When I was 11, I had my entire mouth, tongue and throat completely covered with them, it was miserable!

I've tried various things over the years - most recent is the Lysine. I take it when one starts, and it seems to help it go away quicker. The salt method is also good - so I combine them both. Salt for immediate relief, and Lysine for long term relief.

I've noticed that there are three causes that give them to me:

1) stress 2) biting my cheek accidentally 3) certain foods

So I avoid stress like the plague, try to chew carefully, and don't eat acidic foods. And sometimes I forget all three and get the sores.

For the past few years they've been few and far between, except when I was getting my dental work done. He caused quite a few.

Ultimately it's like a cold, just deal with them until they go away on their own! :)

I hope your week goes well!

strem said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
strem said...

Thanks to all of you for writing in. I wonder what would happen if I tried all of these remedies back to back. I might end up with more ailments than when I first started!

I'm happy to report that when I reached Indiana, I promptly borrowed some matches from Sister Wanda Mikel Friday night, used them before going to bed, and was pain-free when I awoke on Saturday morning. But, if the occasion arises again, I'm anxious to try these new remedies! Thanks again!

Chelle said...

I used to get canker sores when I was a kid, but haven't had one for years. THANK GOODNESS. I don't miss them a bit. I used the same remedy that Emily mentioned - table salt directly to the sore. It really seemed to work but was one of the most painful things I've ever done. Sorry to hear you're suffering! Hope you heal up soon. See you at TNT?

Timothy said...

Hi Strem! I just saw my St Petersburg dentist the other day and he noticed that I have a mouth sores, too. He told me that canker sores can be related to a virus, a temporary weakness in the immune system like a flu, stress, etc. He also said that any sore that does not heal must be checked as soon as possible by a specialist. Well, I may not know any good remedies for canker sores. but I think prevention is the key and of course regular checkup to your trusted doctors and as for me my local St Petersburg dentists. Thanks for sharing this informative post.

Anonymous said...

Sorry this is a really late post. I used to get canker sores ALL the time and could never find anything online to help me avoid or soothe the pain. There was no way to avoid. My doctor suggested taking folic acid daily just for general health. Since I started taking this, I have been canker sore free for over a year! This has worked for my mom as well. I feel like this is a really simple way to prevent canker sores from even happening. I hope this suggestion can help someone else!