Mouth sores are ordinary ailments which affect many people around the world at some point in their lives. They can appear in any of the soft tissues of mouth like lips, gums, cheeks, tongue and at the floor or roof of the mouth. Small and shallow lesions which originate on the soft tissues in the mouth or at the base of gums of a person is known as canker sores. They are also known as aphthous ulcers. As compared to cold sores, they do not occur on the surface of the lips and aren’t contagious, but can be painful.

The appearance of these types of sores often appears first in adolescence. They can also make both eating and talking difficult. Though, they do not have a big life span and can go away by their own in a week or two. One must need to have a check-up with the dentist if it looks like unusually large or painful sore or a sore that doesn’t seem to heal.

A canker sore is also considered as one of the most common types of mouth ulcer. Generally, they have a colour of white or yellow with a covering of red, inflamed soft tissue.

Categorized into three main forms.

Minor Aphthous Stomatitis:

These types of sores are generally less than 1 centimeter in diameter and can get healed in a week. This form affects about 80% of canker sore sufferers.

HerpetiformAphthous Stomatitis:

This condition is usually unordinary and occurs in less than 5% of people having canker sores. They occur as clusters of very small ulcers which have a size of less than a millimeter in some case they sometimes merge together to develop large ulcers. Usually, they can also heal in just over one week.

Major Aphthous Stomatitis:

This form of canker sore affects approximately 15% of patients having troubles in canker sore. They are typically over one centimeter in diameter and often last two or more weeks.

Canker Sore Treatment

This type of sore generally heals without treatment. Though there are different things that can assist you to treat with canker sores like flossing and brushing the teeth regularly to prevent a bacterial infection. In such cases, avoiding spicy foods can be a good option in order to speed up the healing process. Along with that, eating ice-cream, yogurt or drinking milk can also help in reducing the pain.

The pain of canker sore sometimes can be severe. At such cases, one can lessen the discomfort by gargling with salt water or mouthwash. Even if there seems to be a major problem, you can consult with a doctor.

Canker Sore Symptoms

They generally appear inside the mouth as oval or round sores with a border colouring red and gray, yellow or white center. Before appearing visually, a tingling or burning sensation may be there in the area of a person’s mouth where the lesion is originating. One may experience things like fever, physical sluggishness, and swollen lymph nodes.

Canker Sore Cause

Though the exact cause of most canker sores is unknown. But it is said that things like lemons, oranges, figs, strawberries, pineapples, tomatoes and apples, which are known to be acidic or citrus fruits and vegetables, can trigger a canker sore and the problem can become worse. Even some dental appliances like braces or ill-fitting dentures can make a role to promote canker sores. Tissue injury or stress are thought to be one of the causes of canker sores.

Are Canker Sore Contagious?

Canker sores are not contagious as they only occur inside the mouth. It is often confused with cold sores that are actually contagious and usually occur outside the mouth. The next point will try to clear the confusion between canker sore and cold sore.

Canker Sore VS Cold Sore

Canker sores and cold soresvary from each other. Canker sores are self-limiting, which means that they will disappear by their own without treatment in a matter of a few weeks.

On the other hand, cold sores are a group of fluid-filled, painful blisters that are caused by a virus and are extremely contagious. As we have read in the upper section that cold sores typically occur outside the mouth, its targeted points are under the nose, chin or around the lips. Non-prescription topical anaesthetics may be helpful in providing temporary relief.


Anything that is treated with special care can provide you better results. The same thing can happen in canker sore treatment as well. Good oral hygiene is essential, along with that, cleaning dentures are very necessary to prevent denture-induced peculiarities. If oral contraceptives or antibiotics are becoming the cause, it will be better to reduce or change the treatment to get better results.

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