Friday, 3 June 2016

Mouth Ulcers
 
What?

      Mouth ulcers are painful sores in the oral mucous membrane.
        They usually have an oval or round shape and a diameter of three to four millimetres.

·         A mouth ulcer is grey, white or yellow in colour with a red inflamed edge.
·         They appear on the inside of the cheek, lips, gums or under the tongue.
·         Mouth ulcers can occur singly or in groups and usually disappear within one or two weeks.
·         Mouth ulcer slowly recedes and will disappear within 10-14 days.
·         Pain slightly decreases as the mouth ulcer(s) gets smaller.
·         In some situations mouth ulcers can last for several months or keep occurring every two weeks


If the mouth ulcer doesn't disappear after two weeks, you should visit your doctor or dentist, because this can be a sign of an impending disease.


Types of mouth ulcer

Mouth ulcers occur in several forms. They can appear anywhere in the mouth, except for the hard palate and top of the tongue or lips. There are three main types of mouth ulcers:

Minor
Less then one centimetres in diameter
May appear singly or in groups
Heals naturally within 7 to 14 days
Leaves no scar
Major
Greater then one centimetres in diameter
Appear one or two at a time
May take several weeks or even months to heal
May leave a scar after they heal
Herpetiform
Irregular shape
Appear in large numbers or clusters
Healing process takes two weeks to a month 

Recurrent Oral Ulcerations

About 20% of the population suffers from chronic mouth ulcer, called recurrent oral ulceration or recurrent aphthousstomatisis. This disorder is characterized by recurring ulcers every week or month. 


Causes of mouth ulcer
The most common causes of mouth ulcer is a
1.      weak or compromised immune system,
2.      mouth injury
3.      stress.

Although the exact cause of mouth ulcers is unclear, there are a variety of factors that can cause or trigger mouth ulcers:
·   Biting the inside of your cheek, lip or tongue
·   Sharp or broken tooth
·   Poor oral hygiene
·   Spicy food
·   Alcohol
·   Some medicines
·   Smoking
·   Poorly fitted dentures
·   Using a toothbrush that is too hard
·   Toothpaste containing sodium lauryl sulphate(SLS)
·   Hypersensitivity to certain foods
·   Inherited
·   Vitamin deficiency, especially B-complex
·   Low immunity
·   Bacterial or viral infection
·   Hormonal changes
·   Medicines
·   Anxiety
·   Stress
·   Allergy



Prevention
Personal care
·   Eat a healthy varied and well balanced diet of fruit and vegetables
·   Drink plenty of water each day
·   Avoid food or drinks that are hot, spicy or acidic
·   Reduce sweet and sugar consumption
·   Limit alcohol use
·   Take vitamin B-complex and folic acid (especially people with recurrent mouth ulcer and/or immune deficiency)
 Oral hygiene
·   Brushing teeth and floss twice a day
·   Regular dental care/check up's (minimum twice a year)
·   Proper cleaning of the tongue
·    
 Life style
·   Avoid or reduce stress
·   Reduce or stop smoking

When to Contact a Medical Professional


·         If a sore begins soon after you start a new medicine.
·         If you notice large white patches on the roof of your mouth or your tongue (this may be thrush or another type of infection).
·         If the mouth sore lasts longer than 2 weeks.
·         If You have a weakened immune system (for example, from HIV or cancer).
·         If You have other symptoms like fever, skin rash, drooling, or difficulty swallowing.
If any of this above mentioned signs and symptoms occurs kindly walk into any of our nearby PS Dental centre for the specialist consultations ,proper guidance and  treatment at the right time.

Should I have to worry about ulcers?

Most ulcers heal up on their own. However, if they don't heal within three weeks you should visit your dentist. Our dental team will be able to examine your mouth to check that the problem is an ulcer and not something more serious such as mouth cancer. If you suffer from ulcers that come and go often, you should visit your dental team to check that there is not an underlying medical cause.