Are Stress and Canker Sores Related?

Categories: Oral Health

stress and canker soresSCOTTS VALLEY, SANTA CRUZ CA

Discovering painful lesions in your mouth can be concerning, especially when you’re unsure of the cause. Canker sores form in soft tissues under your tongue, along your inner lips, or on the cheek walls. These small round abrasions may have a white or yellow hue but are generally harmless and often heal within a week or two without needing medical intervention. However, understanding canker sore development can help you control outbreaks. Therefore, our Santa Cruz family dentists at Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry share on the blog today how stress and canker sores are related and some helpful tips to relieve these painful sores.

What causes canker sores?

Approximately one in five people develop canker sores, and many suffer from recurrent episodes due to external factors. For most canker sore sufferers, outbreaks usually occur due to allergies or hormonal changes. However, many patients uncover that their outbreaks typically occur during stressful situations or shortly after a stressful event. Additionally, our Los Gatos family dentists explain that acidic foods and minor injuries from a sports accident or cheek bite may cause canker sores.

What should I do when I notice a canker sore?

When you first notice a canker sore, you may automatically become alarmed. However, canker sores usually are not harmful to your oral or overall health and are not contagious. Therefore, the first step is to manage stress, get plenty of sleep, and reduce your anxieties to promote quick healing and prevent more sores from forming. Our family dentists in Scotts Valley explain that over-the-counter oral pain relief products can numb the area and reduce pain. Furthermore, applying milk of magnesia directly to the canker sore each day can speed healing. An additional step to include is to rinse your mouth with salt water or baking soda water to promote healing and reduce bacteria. On the other hand, it’s best to avoid highly acidic or spicy foods until the canker sore heals to prevent further irritation.

When should I be concerned about my canker sore?

In most cases, canker sores will heal within one to two weeks. However, if your mouth sores persist for several weeks, are unusually large, excruciatingly painful, or you run a high fever, then you should seek medical assistance as it could indicate a more serious concern like oral cancer. Our family dentists in Santa Cruz will conduct a full mouth examination to determine the problem and offer effective treatment based on your oral health condition.

Family Dentists in Los Gatos, Santa Cruz, and Scotts Valley, California

Sores inside your mouth can be disheartening and make you wonder what caused the issue. Thankfully, canker sores are not harmful to your oral or overall health and typically heal in a short period. However, when your canker sores fail to heal, it could be a sign of a more serious condition that requires attention. Therefore, if you have canker sores that concern you, feel free to contact our family dentists at Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry by calling (831) 438-4411 or contact us online to schedule your appointment.