A Natural Approach To Health
Living With Canker Sores
I had a question the other day about canker sores.
Canker sores are small ulcers that appear in your mouth and often make eating and talking uncomfortable.
There are 2 types of canker sores:
1. Simple canker sores. These may appear 3-4 times a year and last up to a week. They usually occur in people 10-20 years old.
2. Complex canker sores. These are less common and usually occur in people who’ve had them before.
The exact cause of most canker sores is unknown.
It’s thought stress or tissue injury may be the cause of simple canker sores.
Certain foods, like citrus or acidic fruits and vegetables (lemons, oranges, pineapples, apples, figs, tomatoes, strawberries) can trigger a canker sore or make the problem worse.
Sometimes a sharp tooth surface or dental appliance (braces or ill-fitting dentures) might also trigger a canker sore.
Some cases of complex canker sores are caused by an underlying health condition, like an impaired immune system, nutritional problems, or gastrointestinal tract disease.
Although cold sores and canker sores are often confused for each other, they’re not the same.
Cold sores, also called fever blisters or herpes simplex type 1, are groups of painful, fluid-filled blisters.
Unlike canker sores, cold sores are caused by a virus and are extremely contagious.
Also, cold sores typically appear outside your mouth, usually under your nose, around your lips, or under your chin, while canker sores occur inside your mouth.
You may have a canker sore if you have:
>A painful sore or sores inside your mouth – on your tongue, soft palate (the back portion of the roof of your mouth), or inside your cheeks.
>A tingling or burning sensation before the sore appears.
>Sores in your mouth that are round, white, or gray in color, with a red edge or border.
In severe canker sore attacks, you may also have fever, physical sluggishness, and/or swollen lymph nodes.
Pain from a canker sore usually improves in a few days and the sore usually heals in about a week or two.
Although there’s no cure for canker sores and they often recur, you may be able to reduce their frequency by:
1. Avoiding foods that irritate your mouth, including citrus fruits, acidic vegetables and spicy foods.
2. Avoiding irritation from gum chewing.
3. Brushing with a soft-bristled brush after meals and flossing daily to keep your mouth free of foods that might trigger a sore.
To deal with canker sores, it’s beneficial to:
*Investigate “hidden” allergies, which often trigger or aggravate the condition.
*Ensure optimal digestive and elimination functioning.
*Explore the use of Tea Tree Oil.
*Consider a liver and/or colon cleanse.
*Drink 6-8 cups of purified water daily.
*Eat lots of fresh fruits and veggies daily.
*Increase your raw food consumption.
*Choose organic whenever possible.
*Increase essential fats (Omega-3, Flax oil, fish oil).
*Decrease or eliminate toxic dental care products, like whiteners, mouthwash, etc.
*Decrease or eliminate sugars, hard or sticky candy, etc.
*Decrease or eliminate acid-forming foods and drinks (coffee, soda pop, dairy, red meat, sugar, processed foods, white flour products).
*Decrease exposure to toxic products (cleaners, laundry, personal care, etc.)
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