What is a Canker Sore? Casues, Symptons and Best 9 Home Remedies


Among several types of oral lesions and mouth irritations, people often confuse one type with another. Most of the time people ask, “what is a canker sore?” According to a statistic, about one-third of people are affected by the mouth irritations worldwide, and more than half of the cases are of canker sores. So, one can say that canker sores are, without the doubt, one of the most common types of sores.

What is a Canker Sore – How To Get Rid of Canker Sore Quickly

The canker sores, also known by the name of mouth ulcers, look like small swellings in the mouth with the surrounding red area. They are caused by the weak immune system, poor diet, vitamin deficiencies, stress, food allergies, and many other things. They are pretty different from cold sores, as the cold sores occur inside of the mouth, throat or cheeks.

The aphthous ulcers (canker sores) usually cause tingling and burning, and can also lead to swollen lymph glands and fever. Even though they are not contagious, but they do cause a lot of pain. With treatment, they typically last for up to 9 – 10 days.

What is a Canker Sore treatment (or treatments)?

Now that you know what is a canker sore, it is better to look for remedies that can help in replacing the commercial canker sore medicine available in the market and over-the-counter. These medications can cause various unwanted side effects, which can be avoided with the help of home remedies.

  1. Honey and turmeric for Canker Sore

Turmeric, being a natural antiseptic, assists in fighting against the germs that lead to ulcers in the mouth. Honey, on the other hand, heals and soothes the damaged skin, as well as reduces the accompanying inflammation and pain.

  • Take ¼ TBSP of turmeric powder
  • Add and mix a TBSP of honey to it
  • Apply this paste to the affected areas of the mouth
  • Let it stay there for about 5 minutes
  • Rinse off the application with the help of fresh water
  • Repeat this procedure twice a day until you get rid of the sores
  1. Licorice

The high quantities of glycyrrhizin, present in licorice root, perform an excellent job in soothing the sores, due to its potent anti-inflammatory properties. You can also apply the extract of licorice root on the lesions twice a day.

  • Take a TBSP of licorice root
  • Crush it and soak in a pot containing two cups of water
  • Let it stay there for about three hours
  • Use this licorice root solution as mouthwash every day
  1. Aloe Vera for Canker Sore

Thanks to the excellent anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties of Aloe Vera, it can help the person in getting rid of the complex canker sores. Moreover, it kills the germs and relieves the patient of the redness, swelling, and pain.

  • Take a fresh leaf of Aloe Vera
  • Slice it open with the help of a knife and squeeze the gel out of the leaf
  • Apply this gel to the sore affected areas of the mouth thrice a day

Note regarding the use of Aloe Vera for “what is a canker sore”: For better results, you can also use the juice of Aloe Vera as a mouthwash for at least three times every day.

  1. Coriander

The antifungal, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory capabilities of coriander help in the reduction of swelling, pain, and redness. For the treatment purposes, follow the procedure:

  • Take a cup of fresh water
  • Put it on flame
  • Let the water boil
  • To this boiling water, add and stir in a TBSP of coriander seeds or fresh leaves of coriander
  • Now, reduce the heat
  • Let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes
  • Remove the pot from the flame
  • Let it steep for another 10 minutes
  • Strain the liquid out of this solution and use it as a mouthwash three times a day
  1. Tea Bags

Tea contains tannic acid which is a powerful natural astringent. It assists in getting rid of the inflammation and pain.

  • Take a wet tea bag and place it in a refrigerator for about 5 minutes
  • On your sore, apply this tea bag while applying gentle pressure
  • Let it stay on for about 20 minutes
  • Repeat this procedure three times a day
  1. Tea Tree Oil for Canker Sore

Being a natural antibacterial and antiseptic, tea tree oil eliminates the germs that cause the canker sores.

  • In a glass of fresh water, add and mix ten drops of tea tree oil
  • Use this solution as a mouthwash
  1. Sage for Canker Sore

The calming properties of sage soothe the damaged areas of the mouth and relieve the person of the accompanying pain and inflammation.

  • Take two glasses of fresh water in a pot
  • Place this pot on the flame to boil the water
  • In this boiling water, stir in 3 TBSP of sage leaves
  • Let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes after reducing the heat
  • Remove from the heat and let it steep for about 10 minutes
  • Strain the liquid
  • Use it as your mouthwash

Alternative method: You can also use powdered sage and apply it directly to your sores.

  1. Salt Water for Canker Sore

The application of water and salt on canker sore boosts the healing process and removes the toxins and excess fluids from the skin.

  • In a cup of warm water, add and stir 2 TBSP of salt
  • Rinse the internal of your mouth with the help of this solution
  • Take a pinch of salt and apply it on the sores
  • Repeat this procedure thrice a day to treat the mouth ulcers
  1. Slippery Elm for Canker Sore

Due to the presence of high quantities of mucilage, the bark of slippery elm, when mixed with water, forms a gel-like thick substance. This gel acts as a coating over the mucous membrane of the mouth, thus relieves the inflammation and pain.

  • Mix a TBSP of powder of slippery elm in the sufficient amount of water
  • Thoroughly stir the ingredients until you get a fine paste
  • Apply this mixture on the sores and Let it stay on for about 5 minutes
  • Use lukewarm water to rinse your mouth
  • Grapefruit Seed Extract 

The seed extract of grapefruit possesses potent antibacterial properties and contains powerful bioflavonoids. So, it assists your immune system to avoid infections.

  • Mix a TBSP of grapefruit seed extract in a cup of fresh water
  • Use this mixture as a mouthwash three times every day

What is a Canker Sore? – Prevention tips

  • Avoid drinking alcohol and smoking.
  • Eat fresh vegetables and fruits.
  • If you are suffering from a canker sore, then avoid chewing gums.
  • Drink plenty of water to keep your body fresh and hydrated.
  • Use toothpaste that is free from SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate), as it causes the reoccurrence of sores.
  • Ensure that your body has plenty of good bacteria, by consuming bacteria.
  • Avoid spicy, acidic and salty foods, and many other foods like nuts, chocolates, pretzels, potato chips, shellfish, citrus fruits, and lemons, as thy cause irritation.
  • While brushing your teeth, make sure not to irritate the sores.
  • Keep a healthy lifestyle and regularly perform exercises and yoga.
  • Apply the oil from vitamin E capsules on the sores in the mouth to get rid of the pain.
  • Take papaya supplements and eat fresh papaya.
  • Try using antiseptic creams, over the counter medicines and to get relief from the pain.

So, which of the remedies mentioned above did you try, and which of them have proved useful to you in getting rid of the sores and irritation? If you think that we forgot to mention a mouthwash remedy for “what is a canker sore,” then please do tell us.

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