Mouth Ulcers – Causes and Treatments

Woman with a mouth ulcer holding her cheek in pain

Have you been experiencing pain or discomfort in or around your mouth recently but feel unsure about asking your dentist or family doctor?

Oral health is a major part of your general health; nothing should be overlooked.

People often ignore what seems like “unimportant” pain until it becomes a real issue or won’t go away.

So today, our focus is on mouth ulcers, their possible causes, and some ways of dealing with them.

Unexplained mouth sores

      1. “I keep getting sores in my mouth, and I don’t know why. Can you tell me some common reasons and what I can do to stop it?”

Some common causes of oral sores include biting your nails, chewing on pens or pencils, and eating certain foods like tomatoes or citrus fruits. If you can stop doing these things, it may help the sores go away.

Can immune system issues cause sores?

      2. “I often have a lot of sores in my mouth, and my doctor thinks it’s because of something in my immune system; what can I take to improve it, and what should my doctor do if it returns?”

If an autoimmune disorder is suspected of causing the oral ulcers, your doctor may try prescribing a medication like prednisone to see if it helps.
If it does and the sores don’t come back, that’s great. But if they do, your doctor will need to figure out what’s causing the problem and try to treat that.

Mouth sores and diabetes

      3. “I have been getting sores in my mouth a lot, and I have diabetes; what could be causing this, and how can I stop it?”

Have you recently had a full physical examination? Are you suffering from any chronic illnesses apart from diabetes?
Certain intestinal tract disorders, such as Crohn’s Disease, could be considered a potential cause for your condition. If you have a chronic gastrointestinal disorder, treating it resolves your mouth sores and helps to improve your oral health.

How to reduce mouth sore pain

      4. “I have sores in my mouth that hurt. Is there anything I can put on them to make them feel better while they heal?”

If you’re experiencing discomfort from oral sores, your dentist may recommend a product called Debacterol, which can be applied with a cotton swab to help ease the pain and promote healing.
Debacterol cotton swabs are pre-packaged, similar to a Q-Tip with medication inside. Break the shaft, and the liquid will flow into the cotton tip. Apply to the sore for 10 seconds (no longer) and rinse thoroughly.

Alternative tip for mouth sore pain

      5. “I have a lot of sores in my mouth, and I want to find something that works better than what I am using.”

Your dentist may recommend a “Magic Mouthwash” combination of different medications to help numb the pain and alleviate discomfort caused by oral sores.
It may contain lidocaine, Benadryl, Kaopectate, or Maalox and other ingredients depending on the cause of the sores. It’s a commonly used treatment and can be very effective.

If you have any additional questions about mouth sores, contact us for answers.


Ignoring oral pain or discomfort never usually works well. Often, the problem never really goes away – it just gets worse.

Scheduling regular examinations with our general practitioner and dentist can help to catch these issues before complications arise.

You absolutely should be mentioning oral health issues to your family doctor as well – it may help them diagnose underlying problems!

Call us today if you are experiencing any form of pain or discomfort in or around your mouth.

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Our dentists are located in Waldorf, MD, and see patients from across the state, including Charlotte Hall, White Plains, La Plata, Brandywine, Accokeek, and Mechanicsville.