How do I manage my aphthous stomatitis on a daily basis?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner

Aphthous stomatitis (canker sore) often needs no treatment. However, you can usually manage painful sores on a daily basis by applying over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications. The sores will most often disappear on their own within two weeks. Try to reduce stress in your life, eliminate foods that aggravate the sores, and take a daily multiple vitamin that contains vitamin B, zinc, and folate.

Your dentist or physician can prescribe medicines to help with the discomfort of aphthous stomatitis, or canker sores, small ulcers on the lips, inside of the cheeks, or tongue. When taking medications for canker sores, follow the instructions carefully. You can also increase the amount of fluids you drink; take an over-the-counter pain reliever such as acetaminophen; and make sure to brush and floss your teeth regularly. And avoid spicy, acidic, or salty foods, which can irritate the sores.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.