Mouth ulcers are sores, which have a habit of developing on the inside of the cheeks and lips; they are usually fairly harmless, but can be sore, especially if you accidentally catch your ulcer when you are cleaning your teeth or chewing on a piece of food.
What causes ulcers in the mouth?
Mouth ulcers usually form when you bite your lip or the inside of your cheek by accident, usually when you are eating; however, they can also develop when you are stressed, run down or feeling under the weather. Ulcers can be red, yellow, grey or blue in colour and they range from being completely painless to very sore. It is common for the tissue around the ulcer to be slightly swollen and tender.
What can I do if I have a mouth ulcer?
A mouth ulcer is usually nothing to worry about and they usually heal fairly quickly (within a week) without the need for treatment; however, you can buy over the counter gels and remedies to reduce pain and make you feel more comfortable. It’s best to avoid eating and drinking very hot foods and drinks when you have an ulcer and to take extra care when you are eating and brushing your teeth.
If you have had an ulcer for more than 2 weeks and it has not healed, see your dentist or your GP. Slow-healing sores can be a symptom of mouth cancer and although this is very unlikely, it’s always best to be on safe side. It’s also a good idea to see your doctor if you suffer from ulcers on a regular basis or you have an ulcer, which has got worse or become painful.