Tongue diseases

How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. Updated: June 4, 2019
How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies

We've all had a mouth or tongue ulcer, also known as canker sore, at some point and know how irritating and painful it can be, especially when eating or even talking. Tongue sores are small ulcers that are caused by a many different factors, such as hot meals, accidental bites, viral infections and allergies. Most sores heal on their own within a one to two weeks. However, until has healed, the pain can be irritating. In this oneHOWTO article we'll explain all of the tricks in the book you can use to get rid of canker sores and reduce the pain it causes.

You may also be interested in: What Causes a Sore Throat - All Possible Reasons
  1. Causes of canker sores
  2. Medicines to cure canker sores
  3. Cypress seed
  4. Sodium bicarbonate
  5. Salt for canker sores
  6. Medicinal plants to cure canker sores in the mouth
  7. Honey for mouth ulcers
  8. Hydrogen peroxide
  9. Dairy
  10. Cold to relieve canker sores
  11. Foods rich in vitamin C to cure mouth ulcers
  12. Canker sore prevention
See more >>

Causes of canker sores

Canker sores are lesions that occur for a variety of reasons and can be temporary or can become very painful, itchy and difficult to heal. It is advisable to know the possible reasons why they may appear, as this makes it easier to focus on treatment and prevention to avoid future appearances. The main causes of canker sores in the mouth are as follows:

  • Poor oral hygiene: when oral hygiene is poor, germs and other microorganisms are concentrated in the mouth and can lead to inflammation of the gums and other mucous membranes, as well as the appearance of wounds and canker sores.
  • Stress, depression and low defenses: episodes of stress and anxiety, as well as depression and sadness, cause lowered defenses and, at such a time, various microorganisms can take advantage of the situation and proliferate in our body producing infections and causing these lesions to appear in the mouth. Thus, in reality, any situation or illness that makes us have low defenses can end up causing sores.
  • Viruses: There are several viruses that can cause sores and even ulcers in the oral cavity. These wounds may be one of the first symptoms we notice that a virus is affecting us.
  • Bumps and wounds: If we get hit or bumped on the mouth, it is easy for the mucous membrane to be damaged when it hits the tooth and a sore forms. Similarly, orthodontic chafing and bites will produce wounds that can become more complicated injuries such as canker sores and ulcers.
How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies - Causes of canker sores

Medicines to cure canker sores

To get rid of canker sores means to relieve the pain until they heal by themselves. Your mouth must be kept clean to promote ulcer healing. So, even though it hurts to brush your teeth, brush them several times a day to avoid bacteria build-up in the mouth. They can be cleaned with cotton soaked in an anaesthetic such as viscous lidocaine, which also serves as a mouthwash. This anaesthetic relieves pain and discomfort temporarily when eating, but may diminish the sense of taste. For pain relief you can also apply a layer of carboxymethyl cellulose (dental treatment).

If you have recurring or multiple canker sores, the doctor or dentist may prescribe a tetracycline mouthwash. People with severe recurrent canker sores can use this mouthwash as and when they appear. Another option is to cauterize the ulcer with silver nitrate, which destroys the nerves under the sore. In certain cases, a doctor or dentist will prescribe a corticosteroid ointment to apply directly to severe ulcers and, for acute cases, can prescribe a dexamethasone mouthwash or prednisone tablets.

As an example, fast-acting and effective over-the-counter remedies include bonjela, Colgate Orabase and Iglü. Just apply a little of the gel to a clean fingertip or cotton bud and dab it directly on the canker sore for immediate relief. Your pharmacist can advise you about the best ways to use these products and whether there are any other products that are just as effective.

Cypress seed

A natural remedy to get rid of canker sores is to use Cypress seeds. Boil 10 seeds in an earthenware jar that has been washed with water only (no soap), and gargle with the liquid two or three times a day to speed up the time the sore takes to heal.

Sodium bicarbonate

If you're wondering how to get rid of canker sores from your mouth quickly you'll like to know that sodium bicarbonate is a potent antiseptic and soothing agent and, therefore, one of the most widely used home remedies for canker sores in children and adults around the world. To use it as a cure for this oral disease, mix half a glass of water with a tablespoon of baking soda, dilute it well and rinse it 2 or 3 times a day.

Another way is to make a paste with this product and a little water and apply it directly to the lesion, leaving it to act for a couple of minutes before removing and rinsing well.

You will immediately notice relief and, little by little, you will see that the wound is improving until it heals. You can use this home remedy as many days in a row as you need.

How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies - Sodium bicarbonate

Salt for canker sores

Another natural remedy to get rid of or alleviate canker sores is sea salt, as it has a powerful effect. It may sound painful, as salt in contact with a wound usually causes severe itching. However, it is worthwhile to use a small amount and notice an instant sting to take advantage of the antiseptic benefits that help treat and heal mouth injuries faster.

To use it all you need to do is to heat up a liter of water and dissolve 3 tablespoons of salt in it. Then, remove the water from the heat and put it in a bottle. Take small mouthfuls of the water and use it to gargle and rinse your mouth. Rinse the saltwater vigorously around your mouth for a minute before spitting it out. You can repeat this process 3 or 4 times daily.

Medicinal plants to cure canker sores in the mouth

One of the best ways to cure canker sores is to use medicinal plants for natural rinsing and direct application of creams or gels. These are the best medicinal plants to cure mouth sores:

  • Sage: This plant is a natural antibiotic, with relaxing properties, and thus helps to regulate the stomach flow and acidity of saliva. Therefore, sage is a very good option for treating mouth problems such as sores. Infuse 1 tablespoon of sage for each large glass of water and use it to rinse your mouth 2 or 3 times a day.
  • Mallow: This is a plant with a high anti-inflammatory and soothing capacity that will quickly relieve the discomfort caused by canker sores. Make an infusion with their flowers and dried leaves. Bring the water to a boil and as soon as it starts boiling add a spoonful of mallow, boil it for 10 minutes and remove it from the heat, strain the infusion, cover it and let it stand for 5 minutes. Use this infusion to rinse your mouth, insisting on the canker sores area twice a day.
  • Aloe vera: this plant is soothing, antiseptic and very regenerative. Apply aloe vera or aloe vera gel directly to the lesions in your mouth several times a day, but at least 3 times.
  • Tea tree oil: this oil has very powerful antibacterial and antiviral properties. The tea tree is usually too strong to apply directly, so we recommend that you mix it with a softer oil such as olive or almond, at least twice a day.
How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies - Medicinal plants to cure canker sores in the mouth

Honey for mouth ulcers

Honey is another great way to help heal oral ulcers. Honey will immediately soothe the ulcer, and will promote healing due to its antibacterial properties. With clean hands, rub a small amount of honey to the affected area and don´t touch it for at least 15 minutes.

Hydrogen peroxide

Another of the best home remedies for curing canker sores is undoubtedly hydrogen peroxide, as it calms the pain, helps to keep the mouth clean and get rid of the inflammation, making it heal faster. Wet a cotton swab on this product and apply it directly to the lesion for a few seconds, several times a day, and you'll notice that it feels immediately relieved and, in a short time, a great improvement.

If you prefer to gargle, you can do so by diluting one tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide in a glass of water and taking care not to swallow the mixture.

How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies - Hydrogen peroxide


These foods contain good acids and bacteria that help regulate your mouth's pH, making it easier for the wound and sore to heal and preventing infections. Among dairy foods, yogurt is the most recommended because it is the most effective, but there are other good choices such as magnesia milk or kefir milk.

You can include these foods in your regular diet or you can apply them more directly to the sore with a swab, as many times a day as you need.

Cold to relieve canker sores

When the injury in the mouth is inflamed, it produces a sensation of constant punctures and it stings a lot, it is advisable to apply cold. The low temperature will cause the blood vessels to contract, causing the area to deflate more quickly and to settle, making the pain less painful.

When applying cold to the mouth, it is important to do this carefully so that the injury does not worsen or burn other parts of the mucous membrane. You can put a direct ice for a few seconds and move it around your mouth or take ice cream to apply it more easily.

You can do this several times a day, but you should be careful not to overdo it, because to heal the wound you will need a good blood flow.

How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies - Cold to relieve canker sores

Foods rich in vitamin C to cure mouth ulcers

Foods rich in vitamin C help prevent and cure canker sores in the mouth and tongue. This is because this vitamin helps us to increase our defenses, thus strengthening our immune system and making the body itself can prevent diseases and annoying symptoms such as sores, as well as heal and recover faster.

Some foods with vitamin C recommended to treat these mouth ulcers are:

  • Oranges
  • Papaya
  • Files
  • Lemons
  • Kiwis
  • Red pepper
  • Parsley
  • Broccoli
  • Beans
  • Carrots
  • Radishes
  • Peas
  • Nuts
  • Pistachios

Canker sore prevention

Moreover, it's important to know how to avoid mouth sores to prevent them from appearing again. Keep in mind is to avoid acidic and spicy foods during the days that the mouth ulcer is present. Acidic foods, like oranges, lemons, vinegar as well as spicy foods can irritate and worsen the mouth ulcer.

In addition, you should try eating only bland foods like milkshakes to prevent pain when eating.

Ulcers can usually last between 7 and 10 days before they disappear. However, if you notice that the infection lasts longer, it is also important to know that there are some cases in which it is necessary to consult a doctor, since the most normal treatments and natural remedies are not enough and these wounds in the mouth can reappear frequently. See your doctor in the following cases:

  • If you wear orthodontics, such as brackets, which if misplaced can cause injuries and sores in the mouth, especially on the inside of the cheeks. The dentist will need to check your mouth and appliances to fit them better.
  • If the sores or canker sores appear very frequently and you don't think there is an apparent reason, such as unintentional biting, bruising, rubbing, orthodontics, etc.
  • If the canker sores get worse or appear more severely.
  • If more symptoms of health problems such as fever, cough, mucus, etc. appear.
  • When the treatment is complete you have not noticed any improvement.

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies, we recommend you visit our Family health category.

Write a comment
What did you think of this article?
1 of 6
How to Get Rid of Canker Sores - All Possible Remedies