Mouth ulcers are small ulcers that form on the gums, lips, tongue, inner cheeks, or roof of your mouth. These mouth ulcers are usually red, yellow, or white. Various reasons can cause mouth ulcers, including minor injuries, hormonal changes, some medical conditions, and emotional stress. These mouth ulcers are often painful and can make eating, drinking, and speaking uncomfortable. Mouth ulcers can’t spread from kissing or sharing food and drinks. However, some mouth ulcers could point to underlying health conditions like autoimmune diseases or gastrointestinal issues.

There are several types of mouth ulcers, and each has different causative factors; they also look different from each other in some way. Canker mouth ulcers, or aphthous ulcers, are the most common type of mouth ulcers. Canker mouth ulcers are usually white or yellow with red around the edges. Oral lichen planus is another type of ulcer that can cause itchy rashes and lacelike, white ulcers inside the mouth.

Oral lichen planus is an immune system-related response that most commonly affects women and people aged 50 or older. Leukoplakia is another type of mouth ulcer that causes white or grayish patches inside the mouth. It develops because of excess cell growth or chronic irritation from smoking or chewing tobacco. But sometimes, there is no apparent reason. Leukoplakia lesions usually aren’t cancerous.

Erythroplakia is another type of mouth ulcer caused by smoking or chewing tobacco. Individuals with erythroplakia have red patches that appear behind the lower front teeth or under the tongue. Unlike leukoplakia lesions, erythroplakia patches are precancerous or cancerous. Oral thrush happens due to the overgrowth of candida albicans yeast that causes this fungal infection inside the mouth. It commonly occurs after an antibiotic treatment or when the immune system isn’t as strong as it should be. Oral thrush causes creamy white and red mouth ulcers and patches. Oral cancer lesions can appear as red or white mouth ulcers.

Consult your doctor if you have a mouth ulcer that hasn’t gone away even after three weeks. Most mouth ulcers go away on their own in a week or two; however, a few others may require treatment. Homeopathy helps relieve the symptoms of mouth ulcers.

Role of homeopathy in mouth ulcers

Mouth ulcers are one of the conditions that affect all age groups. For treating mouth ulcers, homeopathy aims to address the underlying cause of the problem, such as infections, diseases, or injuries, instead of just alleviating the symptoms. Homeopathic medicines for mouth ulcers are chosen according to specific symptoms and general health status in individuals.

Seven effective homeopathic medicines for mouth ulcers

Mercurius solubilis

Common name: Quicksilver

Mercurius solubilis is indicated when mouth ulcers are accompanied by excessive salivation, offensive breath, and pain that worsens at night. Patients may experience swelling of glands, a metallic taste in the mouth, and sensitivity towards hot and cold foods. The ulcers may appear white or grayish-yellow and bleed easily.

Borax

Common name: Borate of sodium

Borax is useful for ulcers with a burning sensation, especially aggravated by hot drinks and touch, and commonly for ulcers, which are shallow. Painful mouth ulcers appear inside the lips, cheeks, or under the tongue. Patients may also experience anxiety or fear of downward motion.

Arsenicum album

Common name: Arsenic trioxide

Arsenic album is prescribed for mouth ulcers with burning pain, intense thirst for small sips of water, and restlessness. Patients may feel anxious and chilly and may experience diarrhea along with mouth ulcers. Suitable for meticulous individuals who are worried about health and seek reassurance.

Nitricum acidum

Common name: Nitric acid

Nitricum acid is indicated for deep, irregular ulcers with sharp, splinter-like pains aggravated by touch and cold. The ulcers may have a yellowish base and bleed easily. Patients may also experience a tendency towards anger, irritability, and negativity.

Kalium bichromicum

Common name: Potassium dichromate

Kali. bichromicum is recommended for ulcers with thick, stringy saliva, intense pain, and a tendency to recur. The ulcers may be yellow, covered with tough mucus, and tend to form in clusters. Patients may also experience sinusitis, thick nasal discharge, and digestive issues.

Natrum muriaticum

Common name: Common salt

Natrum muriaticum is suitable for ulcers triggered by grief or emotional stress, with a sensation of dryness in the mouth. The ulcers may appear on the lips, tongue, or inside of the cheeks. Patients may also experience a craving for salty foods and a tendency to suppress emotions.

Sulphur

Common name: Sublimated sulphur

Sulphur is prescribed for chronic, recurring mouth ulcers with a burning pain, worsened by warmth and relieved by cold applications. The ulcers may be red, inflamed, and accompanied by itching. Patients may tend to have heat intolerance, dirty, offensive-smelling discharges, and skin issues like eczema.

Causative factors of mouth ulcers

  • Ill-fitted dentures, braces, rough fillings, or a sharp tooth.
  • Cuts or burns while eating or drinking hard food or hot drinks.
  • Biting the inside of the cheek.
  • Food intolerance or allergy.
  • Damaging gums with a toothbrush while brushing teeth or irritating toothpaste.
  • Feeling tired, stressed, or anxious can also cause mouth ulcers.
  • Hormonal changes, such as during pregnancy.
  • Due to family genes, some families get mouth ulcers more often.
  • A deficiency of vitamin B12 or iron.
  • Medicines like NSAIDs and beta-blockers can also cause mouth ulcers.
  • Some people may develop mouth ulcers when they first stop smoking.
  • Some medical conditions include Crohn’s disease and Coeliac disease (diseases that affect the digestive system).
  • A weakened immune system in a condition like HIV or AIDS
  • Oral cancer can also be one of the reasons for mouth ulcers.

Symptoms of mouth ulcers

  • Redness and pain while eating and drinking.
  • Burning and tingling sensation around the ulcers.
  • Blisters around the mouth.
  • Multiple mouth ulcers.
  • Redness around the edges with a yellow, white, or gray discoloration in the middle.

Treatment for mouth ulcers

The pain and discomfort will reduce in a few days and then disappear in about two weeks with no treatment. For people with much more painful or frequent occurrences of mouth ulcers, a doctor may prescribe medicines to reduce swelling and reduce pain. The doctor may also prescribe an antimicrobial mouthwash or an ointment that is to be applied directly to the infected patch. This can help to ease discomfort. Various mouth ulcer treatments are also available. Possible treatments include steroid mouth spray or tablets that dissolve in your mouth, painkiller gels, ointments, sprays or tablets, and mouthwashes to kill or remove any germs in the mouth.

Diet and lifestyle modifications for mouth ulcers

Refrain from consuming trigger foods

Foods that are spicy, acidic, or salty can worsen mouth ulcers. Identify and steer clear of these trigger foods to relieve symptoms.

Quit tobacco and alcohol

Smoking and alcohol can irritate the mouth’s lining, increasing the likelihood of developing ulcers. Quit smoking and moderate alcohol consumption to enhance oral health.

Follow a balanced diet

Follow a balanced diet rich in plenty of colorful vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and proteins to ensure you receive essential oral health nutrients. To maintain healthy mucus membranes, include foods high in vitamins C, B complex, and iron.

Stay hydrated

Drink ample water throughout the day to prevent dryness and keep your mouth moist, which can help manage mouth ulcers.

Prevent mouth trauma

Be cautious while eating to avoid accidentally biting the inside of your mouth, as this can trigger ulcers.

Consider supplements

Some dietary supplements like vitamin B complex, vitamin C, zinc, and probiotics may help reduce the frequency and severity of mouth ulcers.

Regular dental checkups

Visit your dentist routinely for oral checkups and cleanings.

Maintain good oral hygiene

Remember to brush your teeth using a toothbrush with soft bristles and use an alcohol-free mouthwash to keep your mouth clean.

Conclusion

Mouth ulcers can be quite uncomfortable but are typically harmless and tend to heal independently within 1-2 weeks. However, if they persist, recur frequently, or are accompanied by other symptoms like fever or difficulty swallowing, it’s advisable to seek medical attention. If there’s concern about underlying health conditions contributing to mouth ulcers, consult your doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment. Homeopathy takes a comprehensive approach to managing mouth ulcers by addressing individual symptoms and promoting overall health. It provides long-lasting relief from ulcers rather than simply suppressing symptoms.

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