Meaning of Canker Sores

If the mouth suddenly tingles or feels tight and extremely painful blisters appear in the throat, the diagnosis of canker sores is close. Here you can read everything about the common troublemakers in the mouth.

  • Aphthae are painful blisters on the lining of the mouth that affect the inside of the lips, the roof of the mouth, the gums and the tongue.
  • The pathogens and causes for the appearance of canker sores cannot be clearly identified. However, genetic causes seem to play a role.
  • A treatment for canker sores is only possible against the symptoms and consists primarily of pain relief.

What are canker sores?

Aphthae are painful blisters in the area of ​​the oral mucosa, which are among the most common diseases in the mouth. Aphthae on the inside of the lips, canker sores on the tongue and canker sores on the roof or gums are quite common. More rarely, canker sores also appear on other mucous membranes, for example in the genital area. Aphte means “sponge” in Greek. Aphthae are divided into different forms.

Three different forms of canker sores:

Minor canker sores , also called Mikulicz canker sores, are the most common (80-90 percent). Minor canker sores vary in size from a millimeter to about the size of a lens. They only cause superficial injuries to the oral mucosa that do not leave scars and heal after a week or two.

Major canker sores or Sutton canker sores can reach up to three centimeters in diameter and deeply injure the oral mucosa, which often results in scars. Major canker sores often take many weeks to heal. Fortunately, major canker sores are rare.

Herpetiform canker sores (Latin stomatitis herpetiformis): This canker sore form is also rare. The vesicles appear numerous in herpetiform canker sores, mostly on the inside of the lips or on the edge of the tongue. They are only a few millimeters tall and are reminiscent of herpes, but are not triggered by the herpes virus.

Aphthae: isolated or chronic disease

If canker sores occur repeatedly in patients, the vesicles are medically considered to be chronically recurrent or habitual canker sores. This canker sore form is particularly common in women. Single or rare infestations are classified as solitary canker sores.

Duration canker sores infection

The most common form of canker sores, minor canker sores, only take a few days to a week to heal, while an infection with major canker sores often takes several weeks to heal.

Are canker sores contagious?

Aphthae in the throat, mouth or throat, unlike highly contagious herpes, are not contagious. In order to keep the risk of superinfection with germs that settle in the canker sores low, those affected should protect themselves from other pathogens.

This is how you recognize canker sores

When a canker sore forms, the person concerned usually feels tingling, burning or tightness in one area of ​​the oral mucosa. Within a day, the area reddened and a vesicle with a yellowish to gray-white center made of fibrin, an endogenous protein that forms when blood clots, forms. The blister on the tongue, gums or throat is often framed by a red-inflamed area and is sensitive to pain. When the canker sore bursts, the sore spot burns and hurts all the more.

Aphthae in the throat, gum canker sores or palate canker sores can be as large as the head of a pin up to three centimeters. The most common are lenticular-sized vesicles that heal after a few days.

Symptoms: What symptoms do canker sores cause?

The vesicles in the throat or in the oral mucosa cause pain for those affected and often interfere with eating and drinking or with oral hygiene. If the sore sits on the tongue, it can also make it painful to speak.

Aphthae: diagnosis

Those who develop canker sores for the first time should show the blisters on the gums or in the throat to a doctor in order to rule out cancer and to clarify whether they are mundaphtha or other blisters such as herpes. Experienced dermatologists or general practitioners diagnose Athens on the face of it; there are no special diagnostic procedures for canker sores.

Aphthae: causes

The pathogens and causes for the appearance of mouth ulcers cannot be clearly stated. The vesicles in the throat and mouth are much more common in women than men, more often in spring and autumn than in the other seasons. Possible triggers for canker sores are:

  • Injuries to the oral mucosa – for example after a visit to the dentist
  • Flu infections
  • hormonal changes
  • stress
  • Allergies and allergy-causing foods
  • Deficiency of vitamin B12, folic acid or iron and the like
  • related to serious chronic diseases such as HIV infection and inflammatory bowel disease.

Ultimately, the canker sores, similar to herpes, seem to use the weakening of the immune system to break out. Since canker sores occur frequently in individual families, the genetic predisposition also seems to be an aspect for canker sores.

Canker sores in children

In infants, canker sores occasionally form on the oral mucosa of the hard palate as a result of minor injuries when sucking on the bottle nipple (called Bednarian canker sores). Likewise, small children who cough a lot and with their tongue out because of severe coughing disorders such as whooping cough are occasionally attacked by canker sores on the underside of the tongue and the frenulum. In both cases, the canker sore outbreak is caused by mechanical injury or irritation.

Aphthae: therapy

Since there is no specific means or method to treat canker sores and accelerate the healing process, therapy for canker sores is only possible against the symptoms and consists primarily in pain relief.

Medicines only provide relief, not a cure

Disinfecting mouthwashes without alcohol can prevent germs from settling and multiplying on the sore and open areas that have caused the canker sores (superinfection). The actual healing of the canker sores is not influenced by this.

Ointment for pain and burning

In the case of severe infestation, an ointment containing cortisone may have to be used. Other ointments and gels that contain local anesthetics with anesthetic effect help relieve the burning sensation and pain that accompany an aphthous ulcer.

Are home remedies for canker sores recommended?

The medicine cabinet has some remedies for canker sores ready: Home remedies with soothing, anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects such as tea tree oil, chamomile and sage tea or tinctures made from clove, myrrh and rhubarb root offer natural help against painful mundaphtha.

Prevent canker sores

There are no specific canker sores in the true sense of the word, but those who suffer from canker sores should prevent deficiency symptoms such as vitamin B12, folic acid or iron deficiency, ensure good health, little stress, plenty of sleep and good oral hygiene. It can also be worthwhile to avoid injuries in the mouth from hard toothbrushes, acids, crispy crusts and sharp things in order to prevent canker sores from entering.