It is said that only two things in life are certain: death and taxes. I’d like to add mouth ulcers to that list. Unless, like some ludicrously wealthy Russian oligarch so rich he doesn’t have to pay taxes, you are lucky enough to have escaped you will now the sharp, irritating pain of a mouth ulcer. That searingly painful little white sore on the lining of your mouth, that makes even the most mundane of activities like eating, drinking and even laughing almost unbearable, is one of life’s constants.
But what exactly is a mouth ulcer? Essentially it’s an exposed nerve in the lining of your mouth. The exposure of the very sensitive nerve endings to hot and cold food and drink, and often toothbrushes, is what causes the pain. They are often caused by accidental damage to the skin by biting, burning or even excessive rubbing from metal braces or dentures. These ulcers, caused by damage, are rarely serious and usually clear up themselves within a week or so.
But there are ulcers which represent something a little more serious and these are the ones that may require some kind of medical treatment. Commonly known as aphthous ulcers, they can be caused by hormonal changes in the body (puberty for example), stress or symptomatic of a wider health problem that may need attention. For example it is not unusual for mouth ulcers to be a symptom of herpes of possibly some kind of bowel inflammation. Aphthous ulcers are also often the result of a genetic predisposition. Other causes include vitamin deficiencies, particularly vitamin B12 and iron.
If you are regularly suffering from mouth ulcers it may well be a good idea to see a West London dentist who may be able to shed some light on the underlying causes of the problem. They will also be able to offer some dietary advice on what foods are best to avoid. Usually dietary prevention which includes eating lots of vegetables and some red meat can help. As does avoiding hot liquids and stress. Some more homemade remedies include swilling water and paracetemol and drinking chamomile tea but it is always best to consult your West London dentist.