Remedies for Canker Sores

Canker sores in your mouth can be quite painful, but can be easily treated with household remedies. This is a guide about remedies for canker sores.

Remedies for Canker Sores
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Question: Canker Sore Remedies

By jose 1

I have several little blisters on my top lip that are very tiny, as well as, what I think are ulcers or canker sores inside my cheek and bottom inside of my lip, like 4 or 5! I don't know what they are or what causes them.

I've had cold sores before and they usually disappear within a few days to a week, but this time it's been about a month on and off. I am really stressed. What do I do?

By Jose from Fresno, CA

AnswerWas this helpful? Yes


Most Recent Answer

By Kinga 8 Flag

September 6, 2015

Honey mixed with ceylon cinnamon works for me. take about a 1/4 tsp a couple times a day and keep it in your mouth as long as possible. Cheap and tastes good.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

Tip: Baking Soda for Canker Sores

By sweetshellzz 1

The best way to clear up a canker sore is truly putting baking soda directly on it. I went to the doctor with a mouthful of canker sores and they didn't have a clue. The sores were so bad I couldn't even eat or talk. I decided to burn those suckers off with baking soda and within two days they were gone! Love my baking soda. It does sting, but if you keep applying until it doesn't sting anymore, it will feel better.

By sweetshellzz from MI

CommentWas this helpful? Yes

Tip: Lemon Juice for Canker Sores

By Bobbie 166 11

I have canker sores often and have used may different home remedies, over the counter medication without great success. A friend told me to rinse the area with lemon juice. It stings at first, but after several times of rinsing throughout the day, the sting lessens, and the canker sore healed much faster.

I always have lemons on hand, so do not have to run to the store when a canker sore starts to rear it's ugly head. Try this it really does work.

By Bobbie from Rockwall, TX

CommentWas this helpful? Yes

Archive: Canker Sore Remedies

My 10 year old daughter has re-occuring canker sores. Anyone have a home remedy that actually works? Thank you.



RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Try using L-lyzine. It is a vitamin that you can buy at Walmart. 2 tablets when she gets that "feeling" and then 1 every six hours after that. This is a hint I received from a nurse a long time ago.


By edieparks

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I always use alum when I have a canker sore and it's almost always gone the next day (I use the alum at night before going to bed). Here's a site with remedies and, indeed, alum is one of the remedies mentioned (about half way down the page under "Remedies"). Hope it helps.

by Luvyabye

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I have canker sores sometimes. I use Carmax on my lips and drink Buttermilk. A pharmaciststold me the buttermilk would counter react the acid in the stomach that causes them.I don't like buttermilk but drink it anyway..If they are inside the mouth ask for a bottle of UlcerEase at the pharmacy and use as directed,it works on the ones inside the mouth. Need to drink the buttermilk for either problem. Hope this will help.

by seamstress (05/26/2005)

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

For inside the mouth canker sores I found that gargling a little bit of Hydrogen peroxide (DO NOT SWALLOW) or just swishing it around the sore will heal it over night. On occasion I would have do a second treatment. But for the most part one night should do it.

It is very important not to swallow any, and I wouldn't recommend on children too young to control swallowing.
(05/26/2005)By Virginia

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Thank you! Last night we put a wet/warm teabag on the canker sore, and it helped relieve the discomfort she was having. Buttermilk is easy to get, and I have alum, so I will start there first and see if they help get rid of the one she has. Thank you all for such great hints. I can generally find plenty of frugal remedies, but this was one I wasn't able to.

By DDSS2000

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I have had horrible troubles over my life with canker sores, I finally found that if I use a tea tree oil toothpaste I don't get them nearly at all anymore, You can find tea tree oil toothpaste in a healthfood store and it is more expensive than regular toothpaste, but I found it is well worth the cost.

By Nancy

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I used to get them ALL the time. My Dr. said to try yogurt, any kind, but my fav. is Dannon whipped Key Lime Pie flavor. My grand-daughters LOVE the Dannon Orange Cream one. I have NOT had a canker sore in about 15 years. It has something to do with the yeast in the yogurt.

By Mary

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I had canker sores when I was a youngster often. I ended up going to the Dr. for them. He said to take Listerine, in my mouth and over a sink, let it slowly run over the canker sore. I was to do this about 3 times a day, every time I felt one coming on. It worked great. Now, I might get one every 3-4 years.

Another thing, when drinking from a glass or cup, use a straw, especially in public. This really helps.

by badwater

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

One thing that I have found to work if I feel one coming on inside my mouth is to make strong warm salt water and swish in my mouth where the canker is coming up. If you already have one, I rub salt on it, its going to sting but it will kill it every time.

By Becky

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I use a Vitamin E capsule. I break it open and use the oil inside and rub it on several times during the day. My doctor said eating yogurt will help prevent them and since it is a food that is good for you too, maybe your daughter should find a flavor she likes and try to eat some regularly so she doesn't get them as much. Some frozen yogurt items could be a treat and a help at the same time also. I checked my medical book and it says if you have treated a canker sore for two weeks and it is still there to see a doctor. Good luck!

By maggiemay

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Replace her toothbrush every time her mouth clears up

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

See if your toothpaste contains sodium laurel sulfate (most do). This is a foaming agent that is very irritating to canker sore sufferers. We switched to Biotene toothpaste and the canker sores we have had have been cut by 90%. Rembrandt for canker sore sufferers is also a good one. My pediatrician recommended this and as both a nurse and mother I highly recommend this tip

By Nursemom

RE: Canker Sore Remedies


By Fran Marie

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

We used to use Camphophenek on canker sores and cold cores. Ask the pharmacist for it.

By patsAZ

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I believe that sores like that develop from the inside of your body and manifest itself outwardly. Try buying some Lysine pills at the first sign of a sore and they'll go away quickly, at least they do for my family. Smiles, peg

By peggygv

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I was reading at the previous posts and saw that listerine worked for someone. Too bad it didn't work for me. I consulted my dentist and now i understand why. My dentist says that using listerine actually makes the sore worst and it takes longer to heal because of the alcohol content. He said that salt is a better solution.
(07/21/2005)By Anne

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

A friend told me that as a child she frequently got them and her mom made them eat lots of raisins. Don't know what vitamin that has but she said it worked for her.
(07/22/2005)By Sharon, KY

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I had a chronic problem with painful canker sores for years. I seemed to have them all the time. I finally discovered that if I stayed away from Vitamin C supplements, citrus fruits of all kinds - limes, oranges, grapefruits (I love all of these), many flavored teas, hard candies flavored with citrus - I don't get them. I broke down and had two Margaritas earlier in the evening and I am starting to pay for that treat. I can feel the reactions developing already. I thought very high doses of Lysine use to help them clear up faster. By very high doses I mean at least 1200mg daily for a few days. The remedy, however, was finding the thing that ignited them and that was very difficult. The only thing that helped me with the pain was Orabase.

I can take a regular vitamin supplement but cannot take Vitamin C supplements for some reason.

I have to be particularly careful in Thai and Mexican restaurants because they both use a lot of lime (and I love the taste of lime!)

By Rae

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Arm and Hammer toothpaste is really good for avoiding canker sores in general. It contains baking soda and doesn't have SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate- causes them)

By nicole

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I usually get them when I'm super stressed or right before my period. I use orajel for pain, but the pain it causes for about 30 seconds before it begins numbing is worse than the relief.

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I use Zinc picolinate 30 2 times per day and never get canker sores now .If I run out I have them in 4 days

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I am surprised no one has mentioned Triamcinolone. It is a prescrption medicine, a paste, that works great. If you really suffer from canker sores, take a trip to your doctor and ask for it by name. You may also talk to your doctor about a steroid to help boost your immune system.

I have tried all of the remedies mentioned in this forum as I have continusly suffered from canker sores for 21 years now. Triamcinolone, for me, is the best.

By Leslie

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I have had a bad case of canker sores in my month, going on the 9th day, I have tried Canka, rinising with warm salt water, putting salt directly on the sores and Lyzine, nothing seems to kick it into recovery mode, HELP Canker Girl.

By Lisa

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Buttermilk. I had a canker sore in my mouth for over a week. I tried a number of remedies, but none of them worked for me. My Father told me to drink buttermilk. I drank a cup of buttermilk (holding each swallow to the sore for a bit) and the next day, the soar was gone. He told me that it may take a few days of drinking a cup a day, but it only took one for me.

by dajackson

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Teabags work awesome. Rinsing with salt water helps. To curb swelling put ice on it. Hugs

By kay-k

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Use Vitamin B12. It's round and yellow or sometimes pink. It looks like a large pimple. It really works. And drink water. I learned about this in Med School. I recommend this to all my patients. I hope it works. It's been successful since the 1700's.

By Doctor Manette

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I have just tried a used tea bag, and it is working splendly.
(02/20/2006) By Xavier

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I am so glad to have found this remedy. My husband has gotten 3 canker sores in his mouth, so we are going to try a few remedies. Thanks everyone.
(02/20/2006)By Anne

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I get canker sores all the time and I came up with a solution. It goes away faster if you pour salt on the canker sore but that is really painful. For no pain at all, you can mix salt and water to make salt water and keep it in the canker sore area in your mouth for a while (around 3 to 5 minutes) and do that with warm water for 2 times a day and it should be gone in about 1 to 2 weeks.
(03/19/2006)By Jonathon

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Hi, warm salt water did work.


By Mike

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

An acidic stomach aggravates (causes??) my canker sores. To relieve the pain, make them go away, and neutralize stomach acid, I drink bicarbonate soda (baking soda and water), or eat some TUMs (or use your favorite remedy for acid indigestion).

Yogurt sounds like a great idea to get that good bacteria balanced in the tummy. Makes perfect sense. I'm gonna try it.

By sylviecy

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I started getting these things years ago, especially during stressful times such as finals for awhile they went away, but just this last week one appeared on my gum. What I do on a regular is rinse my mouth out with peroxide before brushing and now that this thing has come I directly apply extra peroxide on with a Q-tip after brushing. This has worked for me for years, I hope that others will find it useful.

(04/13/2006)By T

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

For years during high school I would get awful canker sores on my tongue. I would have them for weeks at a time and tried all of these things I read here. Someone recommended Tea Tree Oil to me. I used it and it can heal some canker sores in just a couple days. I only get one or two a year now but only for a few days.

By Hillary

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Reading this forum has confirmed a number of things I already suspected. Stress is a factor, stomach acid causes them. Using arm and hammer baking soda and taking TUMs prevents them. To get rid of them after you already have them, put baking soda on the sore, and use mouth anesthetic (like anbesol) to relieve the pain.

By Nick



I read all of these wonderful tips and other resources and came up with a few must haves to fight canker sores.

  1. Colgate ORABASE Soothe-N-Seal
  2. Salt Water (just water with salt added) (It stings!!!) (don't swallow) gargle. ***YOU CAN MAKE A SALT PASTE (salt with a little bit of water) and apply directly to soar which will speed up healing process but it does sting more!!!
  3. Rembrandt Toothpaste (no SLS - sodium laurel sulfate)
  4. Hydrogen Peroxide (don't swallow) gargle
  5. Baking Soda (don't swallow) apply to soar

My story: So I had this canker soar on my tongue (OUCH!!!). I couldn't talk. I went to the store and grabbed the COLGATE ORABASE and everything is much better. I can talk and eat without worry. this is what it does...

Instantly Relieves Pain (Really Good), Protects & Promotes Healing (Protects is the Key)

By Canker Soar Fighter

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I am a long time sufferer and nothing worked until I tried Tea Tree Oil. Just a dab and hold it on there for a bit, rinse and spit out. Once or twice a day and the pain stops and the life span of that buggar is reduced to 2-3 days instead of a painful 7-10.

By Widestrides

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I find that taking regular doses of pomegranate juice works for me. Once a day should do it.
You can gargle with it as well and rinse your mouth out with it.

By Liz

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Dampen a green tea bag on the canker sore and leave it on for about fifteen minutes. Or you can try making a paste of arm & hammer baking soda and leave it on for five min.

By Kelsey

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Post (Guest Post) (Edit) (Delete)
I'm sitting with a green tea bag in my mouth as I type. Hopefully this will help because I'm on day 7 of having the WORST canker sore I've ever had in my life.

By Lindsay

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I get these about once to twice a month allways in the same general areas of my mouth what can help keep them away? I'm so tiered of them. email rose_marie822000 @ yahoo . com

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I am eleven years old, I have recently got my very first canker sore, two ways that I find quite effective are: putting kleenex-tissue between the sore and your mouth, that way it allows the sore to get air, causing it to get better, putting ice on the sore does not make it go away but it relieves pain and numbs your mouth. Apple sider and vinegar also works well. Put a tea bag on the sore and hold it there, even know it may hurt, put lots of pressure on it, trust me it will help (green tea works best because on all of the natural herbs). Also, make sure that you do not eat to much sugar, brush lightly upon the sore spot and around it, gargle salt water ever night and make sure that your toothpaste does not contain more than 2% of sodium or any sodium-lauryl sulphate, because those harmful chemicals will irritate the canker sore. I hope that you feel better, as I know how painful they can become. Thank you for your time, good luck with getting rid of your awful canker sore(s). And I truly hope that some of these suggestions work for you. Thank you.

By Taylorann

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

The Dr told us to mix 1 teapson of liquid Benadryl w/1 teaspon of Hydrogen Peroxide, then use a quetip and swab the entire mouth with it. So far it has helped my kids. Hope this works for you guys as well

By Mother of 2 w/Canker Soars

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Peroxide directly on it cleared it up in 2 days (03/21/2007)

By kap

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Best thing is to put salt on your finger and put it directly on the sore. People complain that it's too painful, but they exaggerate. It numbs the pain for a long time and helps heal it.

By Mo

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Canker sores tend to run in the family so my paternal grandmother told me to dip my finger into some honey and "put it directly on the sore." The canker sore should be gone within 2-3 days. Also, drink lots of water, not juices or whatever, only water.

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I was looking through these comments, and I saw one that said alcohol makes canker sores worse. I am using Zilactin-B and it really stings bad. but, it's been 30 minutes since I used it and the pain is already starting to go. I also bought Oral-B Amosan, but i prefered using Zilactin because it was easier to use. Oral-B was a napkin that had to be dissolved in 2 tablespoons of water and then had to be rinsed in the mouth.

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Buy a toothpaste that DOES NOT HAVE the ingredient Sodium Laurel Sulfate. I used to get canker sores all the time, then I switched toothpaste, and after about 3 months, I stopped getting them. Now I get about 1 a year.

It is a little hard to find, but well worth it. Good luck! (06/24/2007)

By Erin

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I just tried a new remedy and it seemed to help the pain and provide a protective coating right away! I swished a mouthful of liquid antacid for about 30 seconds, spit it out, and then repeated that just one more. I ate about 15 minutes later and NO pain while eating.

Rembrandt Canker Sore Toothpaste is also helpful! (06/27/2007)

By Amanda

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I recently had a canker sore right inside my lip. Unfortunately it was to close so the outside of my lip that you could actually see the white bump when I smiled or opened my mouth. Rubbing toothpaste on it keeps it numb for a while. But doesn't cure it. I couldn't rinse with peroxide because the canker was to close to the outside of my mouth. So I took a tissue and put peroxide on it and put an immense amount of pressure inside my lip. The canker went away in a matter of 3 days. Putting salt directly on it stings put definitely helps. Baking soda being turned into a paste or a powder directly on the canker works too.

By Sarah

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I use large pieces of salt (like rock salt) but it's meant for cooking with. place it on the sore for a couple minutes, take it out of your mouth, repeat throughout the day.

By Joey

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Try using Flaxseed oil or any other Omega 3 Fatty acid supplement. Omega 3's will reduce the underlying acidic condition within the body. This is the main cause of canker sores. Excess body acid forms a miniature ulcer in the mouth, which just like a stomach ulcer burns a hole into the skin. Vitamin C also helps too. You should notice a huge decrease in canker sores within a few weeks of use.

By Michael

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Warm tea bag works great :)

By Chris

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I get canker sores all the time and I can never seem to find anything that works for me. I used my dad's prescription mouthwash and that worked, but now its gone and I cant find anything to heal the ones I'm getting now. Email me with some remedies.

servedalarockstar AT (09/02/2007)

By Tia

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

If you guys are getting "canker sores" on the back of your throat you need to see your doctor immediately. There's a very good chance that you have strep throat and you need antibiotics. If you're having a hard time eating or drinking water then it is especially important for you to get to your doctor immediately. You don't need to put up with the pain and you SHOULD NOT WAIT ANY LONGER, because its a bacterial infection that wont go away without prescription antibiotics.

By Emilee

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I'm 15 years old and just got my first canker sore ever. Its inside my lip, close to the base of my teeth. It hurts to eat, and sometimes to talk. I had tried 1 tablespoon salt with water, and after that wasn't working, I tried 1 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. baking soda together in 4 oz. of water. The salt/baking soda worked better than just salt with water, but I eventually just took and poured straight salt onto the canker sore and used a Q-tip to push it down and around the sore. The straight salt seems to be helping numb the pain and heal the sore. Hope this helps you all out!

By Kelly

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Put salt directly on the sore which can be pretty painful and then put honey on it after you swish out the salt.

The tea bag is also a great remedy.

By Olga

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Just an FYI, a "canker sore" near or on your tonsils is knows as tonsillitis (like strep throat). You should see a doctor immediately because nothing but antibiotics will work on that.

By Stacy

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Peroxil is a mouthwash with a peroxide base. It gets rid of bacteria in your mouth. It might not cure it but it will hinder more from coming.

By lilmiss

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Try using "oracort" ointment. You need to have it prescribed by a doctor but it helps with the inflammation. It's a corticosteroid.

By Dee

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Typically the best remedy is start taking Lysine pills. It works for both canker sores or cold sores as well.

When you feel the canker sore starting to form, take several L-lysine pills (natural supplement), I usually take at least four, once in the morning and once in the evening. If you start soon enough, it will quit forming. If already formed, it will heal faster.

L-Lysine is an essential amino acid. L-Lysine is essential for maintenance of nitrogen balance. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and help fuel skeletal muscles. Each tablet supplies 500 mg of free-form L-Lysine. Kosher and Vegetarian. As a dietary supplement, take one to three tablets three times daily, an hour before meals or on an empty stomach.

By Elizabeth

Tried almost EVERYTHING yesterday

When I was younger, I got canker sores not too frequently, but now I'm 23. I've been getting them very recently and sometimes multiple ones. I usually bear with them until they go away (as painful and miserable as they make me feel), but I got one earlier this week and yesterday I bit the area twice while eating because it was so swollen. The first time I could see a blood shot near it that got worst after the second bite. I said enough is enough, someone must have a remedy for these things. I came across this page and in desperate hope to get rid of it, I tried everything.

I actually was looking at the wrong forms at first because I was looking at Cold Sores (which are actually outside of the mouth) and it said to try vinegar. So I put vinegar on it in the morning and surprisingly it felt a little better for a while. Later I started reading more and discovered it's actually a Canker sore I have. After reading this page, I went home and after eating lunch (which involved some yogurt) I first put salt on it. It hurt A LOT but I just kept it there.

After that I held a cotton swab of peroxide on it. I rinsed my mouth and used the other side of the swab to put some tea tree oil on it. By that time, the area was really puffy and swollen. I thought "Oh no, I overdid it." Even though it was puffy and irritated, it didn't seem to hurt too much. Maybe after all the salt pain, I numbed it. Who knows?

In the night I put the warm tea bag on it.. then brushed my teeth and then dabbed it with some more tea tree oil before heading to bed.

This morning, I woke up and the sore is a lot bigger. It now takes up the whole area that was puffy and swollen yesterday. But the weird thing about it is that it doesn't hurt as much. I mean there's still a slight pain but I don't feel it running through nerves of my mouth and hurting my tooth. It's still a little bulky like i can still feel it's there, but not swollen enough to bite it again (hopefully). The pain is 95% better and feels like it's on it's way to disappearing. Even though it looks REALLY bad.

So in summary, I think I tried everything except the buttermilk (cause I had none), and the alum (cause I still don't know what that is). So I can't tell you which one helped. I hope by tomorrow, it's a lot smaller or gone completely but I think I'll keep putting the tea tree oil until then since it's the only one that doesn't really irritate it. I think I did enough of that yesterday.

By Sun

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Over the counter BEST ever product to quickly treat and relieve the pain of a canker sore is Amosan! It's a product of Oral-B and it's a rinse. Within a couple of days the canker is almost gone!

By Holly

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I have been getting cankers my entire life and still have not found the perfect remedy. Zilactin B works, depending on the location of the sore. Right now I have one on my tongue (right under my teeth so every time I eat or speak, it kills) and in the way back of my throat. Talk about painful. I am now using glyoxide, baking soda and salt water since I can't reach the one in the back. I am going to try the tea tree oil and buttermilk next, I guess. Though I have been dealing with them my whole life, I have not been able to pinpoint them, except when I cut my gums with chips or something and it's obvious. I don't even know where to begin to narrow it down.

By D

Archive: Canker Sore Remedies

I am 29 and have suffered since I was little. I get them once a month if I do not take preventative measures. The good bacteria found in natural yogurt is what works for me. My mother used to make it homemade, because it worked so well. Later we found, acidophilus capsules. This is the good bacteria in a little pill. Works wonders.

When I have an outbreak, I use Anbesol, this is what is used on baby gums when they are teething. It hurts for 1 millisecond, but helps to numb the area.

By RNH from New Brunswick, Canada


RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I have a couple of tips that no one has mentioned yet. You can get rid of strep using natural remedies. We have done it use natural antibiotics with no side affects as with antibiotics. Next the best thing we have found for canker sores is colloidal silver. It is a natural antibiotic and should not be taken for more then 10 days. Hold it in your mouth for as along as you can and then swallow. Do several times a day. This will also boost your immune system. Hope you get relief. (01/14/2008)

By Becki from MO

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Too much sugar candy can cause canker sores. I take a Q-tip, wet it, dip into baking soda and put onto canker sore and hold it there. The Q-tip helps to keep it in one spot, the soda helps neutralize the acid in the sore. Smarts something nasty, but works wonders to clear it up. (01/14/2008)

By michawnpita

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

My son's dentist said to avoid oranges and orange juice when you feel one coming on or have one. I used a Listerine strip on a canker sore and it made it numb and heal faster than anything I've tried. (01/14/2008)

By awanawr

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

As Elizabeth says take 500mg Lysine every day. I used to get them every few weeks. Lysine is an amino acid that gets depleted from the body. You must take it every day. If one should start, take 500mg twice a day. They are so painful you can't eat much of anything you're so afraid of getting food near it.

Juanita from Homewood, IL (01/14/2008)

By Juanita

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I've read a lot or remedies, but only a few posts discuss causes and preventions.

No one in my family can take vitamin C supplements, and we are all very sensitive to citrus, tomatoes, pickles, margaritas, and peppermint candy. My problems with mouth ulcers stopped once I realized that I broke out only after eating oranges, mangoes, grapefruit, pineapple, etc. Tomatoes which are also used in chili and pasta dishes make my mouth sore and gums puffy. My tongue and mouth will actually start burning while I'm eating these foods, especially citrus.

Another major problem is flavored toothpastes, especially spearmint flavors and the Scope type of pastes. I switched to plain unflavored Crest and my gums immediately stopped bleeding. I eat acidic food in extreme moderation. For example, if I eat an orange, I definitely avoid tomatoes on my sandwich. I ate chili for dinner last night and again for lunch today, and now my mouth is sore. The tomatoes and that darned margarita got me again. (01/15/2008)

By KoiFlowers

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I have been a canker sore sufferer for most of my life and it has only been in the last few years that I've found anything that really works for me. Mainstream medical science doesn't pay much attention to cankers. Most doctor's I've encountered say, "it's nothing to worry about, just wait a week or two". Easy for them to say.

For me, taking B-vitamin supplements and swishing with Listerine help the most. This definitely reduces the intensity and duration of the sores I get.

Also, my anecdotal experience is that prescription antibiotics work really well. A few years ago I had a sinus infection and the doctor prescribed some type of antibiotic. It just so happened that I had a bad canker sore on the inside of my lower lip at the same time. That canker healed faster and with less pain than any other significant canker I've ever had. Also, the cycle of healing was much different. The canker just skipped several of the phases they normally go through during the healing process. (01/26/2008)

By Michael

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

For all of you that can not take vitamin C; try Ester C which is Calcium Ascorbate and non-acidic. The most common vitamin C is Ascorbic Acid which for some can cause irritation. (01/29/2008)

By David

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

To kill the pain immediately and help clear it up, get some Pepto or Maalox and use a Q-tip to dab it on the ulcer. It feels better instantly and helps the sore heal. Also, tea bags and salt help, but they may hurt. (02/04/2008)

By Kendra

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

The trick is to use Canker Cover, I bought them at Walgreen's. It is a little hard to apply, but leaves a gel substance within 30 minutes. They advertise that it usually only takes one treatment. We will see. (03/11/2008)

RE: Canker Sore Remedies


  • Eat plenty of salad with raw onions. Onions contain sulfur and have healing properties.
  • Diet should include yogurt and other soured products, such as cottage cheese, and buttermilk.
  • Prepare a solution by adding 2 oz hydrogen peroxide, 2 oz water, and 1 tsp each of salt and baking soda. Rinse the mouth with this solution. Do not swallow.
  • Rinse your mouth with Milk of Magnesia to coat sores.
  • Orange juice is helpful in preventing the canker sores of the mouth. Drink it up in 2 or 3 days it will go away. Lack of vitamin C causes them. You can also take Vitamin C pills if you don't want to drink all that orange juice.

  • Cover the ulcer with a wet tea bag; the tannin will help dry up the sore.
  • Mix sodium bicarbonate powder with water. It is a very effective first aid remedy. This mixture can be used as a mouth rinse as well as swallowed to help make the body more alkaline.
  • Use a toothpaste containing sodium bicarbonate instead of the standard toothpastes high in fluoride and other chemicals.

  • Antacids can soothe canker sores by reducing the acidity in your mouth that can irritate them.
  • Combine equal parts of the liquid form of Kaopectate or Milk of Magnesia (both antacids) with Benylin or Benadryl (both mild anesthetics). Apply the mixture to the canker sore with a cotton swab. You'll cut down on painful acidity in your mouth and numb the sore, too.

  • Try stress-relieving acupressure exercises. Avoid constant stress. Take time to exercise, sleep, and relax.
  • Avoid eating fish or meat of any kind for two weeks. The consumption of animal protein increases the body's acidity, which slows healing.

  • Avoid chewing gum, lozenges, mouthwashes, tobacco, coffee, citrus fruits, and any other foods that you know trigger these sores.
  • Avoid hard toothbrush bristles or sharp-edged foods such as potato chips or dry bread crusts. Too much acid from fruits and vegetables, and spicy foods can also trigger mouth sores.

  • Keep the bowels regular to prevent toxic buildup. Walk regularly, walking in fresh air to oxygenate the body and stimulate bowel movement.
  • To avoid getting canker sores, it is important to maintain a proper balance of minerals, acidity, and alkalinity in the body.

  • Do not use the same toothbrush for longer than one month.
  • Application of peppermint oil helps, as it is an anesthetic agent.
  • Mix coconut milk with honey and massage the gums 3 times a day.
  • Take 1 tsp finely powdered Indian Gooseberry root bark, mix with honey. Apply to affected areas frequently.

  • Grate some fresh coconut. Extract the milk and gargle with this 3-4 times a day.
  • Keep 1 glass of chilled water and 1 glass of hot water ready at hand. Gargle alternately with hot and cold water.
  • Boil 2 cups of water. Add 1 cup fenugreek leaves and remove. Cover and keep for sometime. Strain the water and gargle 2-3 times a day.

  • Boil 1 tsp of coriander seeds in 1 cup of water. Remove when slightly warm, gargle. Repeat 3-4 times a day.
  • Chew on 5-6 tulsi (holy basil leaves) and sip some water. Repeat 5-6 times a day.
  • Raw tomatoes help get rid of mouth ulcers. Gargle with tomato juice 3-4 times a day.

  • Mix 7 parts of sugar candy (mishri) with 1 part of camphor. Apply on the blister.
  • Mix a pinch of turmeric powder to 1 teaspoon of glycerin and apply.
  • Avoid hot or spicy foods to minimize discomfort. Mild mouth washes such as salt water or over-the-counter mouthwashes may help.

  • Apply hydrogen peroxide (1 part hydrogen peroxide and one part water with a cotton swab) on the canker sore
  • Pouring salt directly on the ulcer can prove effective, however this can be extremely painful and can scar.
  • Rinse mouth and especially the affected area with sage tea 3 times a day. The improvement can be seen within 24 hours.
  • Gargle a mouthful of warm vinegar with half tablespoon of salt for about 30 secs, 3 times a day. Extremely painful, but healing can be seen in about 2 days.
  • Make a paste of baking soda and water and apply directly to the sores.

Homeopathic remedies can ease the pain of canker sores, reduce inflammation, and help the tissues heal.

Arsenicum album: A person who breaks out in burning, painful mouth sores, and also feels anxious and tired, is likely to benefit from this remedy. Hot drinks often ease the pain, and the person feels best when keeping warm. They often have unhealthy, easily-bleeding gums, and tend to be extremely neat and tense. Arsenicum album is recommended when the mouth is dry and burning, and the ulcers are soothed by warm water. Restlessness and anxiety are felt. Often caused by stress and worry.

Borax: This remedy is often helpful when canker sores feel hot and sensitive. Sores may break out on the inside of the cheeks, on the gums, and on the tongue. Produces profuse saliva, yet still feels dry inside the mouth. Other indications are: sensitive to noise, suffers from motion sickness, bleeding ulcers when touched, and hot and tender mouth.

Calcarea carbonica: This remedy is often indicated for infants and small children who suffer from recurrent canker sores. Other indications are: head-sweats during sleep, and slow to teethe or learn to walk. May also aid with canker sores in adults who are chilly, stout, and easily fatigued.

Hepar sulphuris calcareum: This remedy may be indicated when a person develops painful mouth sores that become infected-with pus formation, extreme sensitivity, and aggravation from cold drinks. Often feels extremely chilly, vulnerable, and oversensitive.

Mercurius solubilis: This remedy is useful when bleeding gums, a swollen coated tongue, and offensive breath are seen along with canker sores. The sores feel worse at night, and salivation is profuse, with drooling during sleep. The person tends to sweat at night and is very sensitive to any change in temperature.

Natrum muriaticum: Pearly sores that erupt inside the mouth, especially on the gums or tongue, may respond to this remedy. The mouth feels dry, and the tongue may have a tingling feeling. Often troubled by cold sores around the corners of the mouth or chin, and have chapped or cracking lips. A craving for salt, strong thirst, and a tendency to feel worse from being in the sun are other indications for Natrum muriaticum.

Nux vomica: A person who needs this remedy may break out in canker sores after overindulging in sweets, strong spicy foods, stimulants, or alcoholic beverages. The person may have swollen gums, a coated tongue, and bloody salivation. Irritability, impatience, and a general chilliness are often seen.

Sulphur: For sores that are painful, red and inflamed, with burning pain that is worse from warm drinks and aggravated by heat of any kind. The mouth may have a bitter taste; the gums can be swollen and throbbing. Reddish lips and mucous membranes, and a tendency toward itching and skin irritations are other indications.

Dosage: Follow the label directions. Take one dose and wait for a response. If improvement is seen, continue to wait and let the remedy work. The frequency of dosage varies with the condition and the individual. (03/26/2008)

By Name13013

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Last time I got cankers and there were 3, 2 top and 1 bottom, I couldn't eat well. Here in the Philippines somebody told me to use "Tawas" this is a mineral, good thing, it is very cheap, available in the streets. Just break a small piece and put it in your mouth and rub it on the affected area and rinse your mouth, after 2 days it will disappear.

By Rey

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I tried putting salt directly on them and that hurt very bad, so I would say rinse with hot saltwater. My grandma used to tell me to do that, and it usually worked. (01/03/2009)

By Steph

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I drink pure green tea with no sugar (Ito En, to be specific), and it really cuts the pain and seems to speed up the healing process. I also just avoid super-sugary stuff in general to try and keep the mouth as clean as possible so it can heal faster. And finally, mouthrinse (the antiseptic, not mouthwash) is key, since it will kill bacteria and numbs the sore it a bit. (02/24/2009)

By Sara

Archive: Baking Soda for a Canker Sore

If you have a canker sore on your lip (or worse, on your tongue) you can help it heal within a day by putting a small bit of baking soda right on the sore. Then let it drool for about half a minute. Rinse your mouth with cold water and no more hurt. You can follow up with swishing around warm salt water if you like. Usually one application does the trick.

Source: I've been doing this since I was seven years old. My mom was a believer in baking soda, so am I and I'm now 55.

By scrcrow from Orem, UT


RE: Baking Soda for a Canker Sore

I brush my teeth with baking soda, to include the tongue and gums so that my mouth smells and feels clean in the morning. Once a day is what my dental hygienist recommended. (08/01/2009)

By mklema92658

Archive: Canker Sore Remedies

My 5 year old gets canker sores occasionally and when he does, brushing his teeth is horrible. He usually doesn't say anything until teeth time. I've tried putting some remedies on it and it's horrible for him.

He doesn't get them enough for us to change diet, it's occasionally. I am looking for something that he can rinse with to help speed up the healing process and take away some of the pain. Thanks.

By Mindy


RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Bless his little heart! I feel his pain, so, I recommend ABREVA. It's expensive, but it really works and only takes a small squirt 5 times a day and the sore goes away faster than anything I've tried in the past, (soda, etc. - ouch - Burning!). You didn't say what age, so ask pharmacist. Hope this helps the little one! Maw-Maw (01/09/2010)


RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Gargle with a solution of baking soda and water, tastes awful but helps neutralize the acid. And you might want to check the sugar that he is getting, believe it or not, a lot of sugar in a diet can cause canker sores. Believe me, it's from experience! (01/12/2010)

By michawnpita

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Poor little guy. Canker sores are so painful!

But maybe there's something you can do to prevent them. I found out after many years of suffering. My dentist wasn't any help. Just told me that a lot of people suffer from them.

So I did my own research and discovered a simple explanation! Many people are sensitive to one of the chemicals found in most toothpastes! That chemical is a detergent called "sodium lauryl sulfate," also called "SLS." It's the ingredient that makes toothpaste (and soap and shampoo)"foamy."

It's extremely drying to mouths that are sensitive to it, and causes mouth ulcers and canker sores to form. Unfortunately most toothpastes include SLS in their formulas, even the "natural" brands. Just check the labels - it's almost always in there.

But during my research I found that there are a few toothpaste that have deliberately omitted SLS because of the canker sore issue. I tried a couple of them. The one I liked best was "SQUIGLE Enamel Saver." The downsides are that you have to order it online, and it's also more expensive than regular toothpastes (about $7 and a few more bucks for shipping).

Rembrandt also makes an SLS-free version (I think it's called "Gentle Formula," but I found that one was so dry that it was hard to squeeze out of the tube!

Squigle worked so fast and so well to eliminate my canker sore breakouts that I realize I will always have to "splurge" on my toothpaste, or suffer the consequences!

I've been using it for about two years, and in all that time I've had only two canker sores! I got them both at the same time and it was when I was getting over the flu, so I think they were just from the stress of being run down for a couple of weeks.

As a person who has had canker sores at least once a month most of my life, and in recent years getting them almost non-stop, the SLS-free toothpaste has been a miracle! I sure wish they'd figured this out a lot sooner.

Maybe you could ask your dentist's opinion about trying it. (Mine was clueless, but that was a few years ago.) Good luck to you and your little guy! (01/12/2010)

By mirador

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

If you could talk him into telling you when they are coming on I use a prescription called Clioquinol 3% Hc1% that works wonderful. It is a cream that has to be applied several tims a day and if I catch the sore when it is coming on it won't go ahead and come by using this cream. I cannot drink orange juice over one glass a month or so and have to watch high acid tomatoes also. I have had cold and canker sores for 50 years and this is the best treatment I have found yet. Good luck. (01/13/2010)

By latrtatr

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

When my dd immune system went down she got them. Put hydrogen peroxide on it. Do not double dip q tip in it. Get it super wet and gently let it drop onto the canker sore. Have him watch the bubbles. Ria (01/13/2010)


RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Ora Gel will not cure the sore but it will numb it temporarily while he brushes his teeth. (01/13/2010)

By Ann Parker

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Yes, peroxide diluted with water. (01/13/2010)

By TXBetty

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

My husband has suffered his whole life until he found out about "Listerine" it works! He rinses after he eats certain foods like tomatoes or chocolate and it prevents them and if he does get one rinse at the first sign it they go away or shortens the duration! (01/13/2010)

By jdsjkk

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

If you have a doctor who will write a Rx for you, get it for kenalog in ora base. This stuff is amazing, just before bed, you dry the area and dap on a very small amount. Then go to sleep and the next morning the sore is gone, really gone. But the reason these things come in the first place is from digestion that's screwed up. It's probably from not enough hydrochloric acid production in the stomach. This was my problem. (01/13/2010)

By c t

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I got these all the time when I was growing up, sometimes two or three at a time and they were horrendous and very painful!

My grandma told my mom to have me put ALUM on them. It's a pickling agent used to make pickles, sold in the spice aisle. It comes in a little jar and is a white powder. It does sting when you first put in on (and doesn't taste good either, very sour) the canker sore, but within seconds it numbs the pain and won't numb the rest of your mouth the way other pain relieving oral cremes can. It also works to heal the sore faster by protecting it and helping it to dry out. It always, always worked for me, and I've used it on my son when he gets them (although he's only had a few).

Abreva won't work - canker sores inside the mouth are not the same as fever blisters or cold sores. Other pain cremes just numb the pain and the rest of your mouth too!

I'd give this a try, it's a very old remedy. Surprised, actually, to see that someone hadn't already mentioned it. That's why I had to... Hope this helps! (powdered alum if you need more clarification but on the label it just says "Alum", which I just looked up on wikipedia and it says it's a common home remedy for canker sores!)
Also the jar lasts a long time.

To use, just wet the tip of your (clean) finger, stick it in the jar to stick some of the powder to your finger, then stick it on your canker sore. I used it as often as I wanted to, whenever the numbing effect wore off (which was a few hours or more) ~Jaidamoon (01/13/2010)

By JaidaMoon

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

The easiest and most painless way to cure canker sores is by dipping a Q-Tip in Pepto-Bismol the hold it on the canker sore for a few minutes. It will feel cool and soothing. Do this 1-3 times a day for 1-2 day's and the canker sore will go away. You can swallow any Pepto that will be in your mouth with your saliva or you can spit it out. It is better to swallow it because this is what cures a sour stomach by lining the wall of your stomach. I am a retired nurse and have used this remedy on myself and my children for many years. It works great!
Pat from Illinois (01/13/2010)

By laplob

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

Try L-Lysine, in the Vitamin Aisle. My grandmother had me do this when I was younger. (01/14/2010)


RE: Canker Sore Remedies

My son had this problem for years. Turns out it was the toothpaste he was using (the red and white-striped one). We switched to Biotene - problem solved. (01/15/2010)

By ccarnow

Archive: Canker Sore Remedies

To cure a canker sore, dip a Q-Tip in Pepto Bismol. Place Q-Tip directly on sore. It is very cool and soothing and will heal the sore within a day or two. It is safe to swallow any excess Pepto or you can spit it out, but it's better to swallow it because chances are your stomach is or has been upset too and the Pepto will help it, too.

You can even use the Generic Pepto from Dollar General or Wal-mart. You may need to repeat this two to three times a day. Usually by the second day, it's not sore anymore.

Source: I am a retired nurse and one day I tried it because I have always used Pepto-Bismol for stomach upsets.

By Laplob from Illinois


RE: Canker Sore Remedies

As a dietitian, I am a firm believer in that most of our health problems stem from what we ingest. I have always suffered from (what I thought) was sporadic flare-ups of canker sores. I have heard numerous theories about what causes them and so I never really tried to connect the dots with food until recently. I figured since everything else was out of my control (like viruses, genetics, etc) then maybe, just maybe, I had been doing it to myself, so I decided to keep a food diary for 1 year. Also, every time a canker sore began to appear, I noted it in the food diary. It actually didn't take very long before I noticed strong correlations between my flare-ups and certain thing I had eaten within the past few days!

There were 2 specific things that, if eaten/ingested, almost always seemed to be followed by canker sores: alcohol and anything tomato related. So I decided to test this correlation by first removing alcohol entirely from my diet for 3 months. Nothing changed. I still had flare-ups at least once a month like I had always had.

Here is where things got interesting. I turned my focus toward tomatoes and anything with tomatoes in it. This was very difficult for me because I love tomatoes, and I put ketchup on many things. However, I dedicated myself to this big task and began another 3 month test. No tomato slices, no ketchup, no red pasta sauce, etc. The difference was noticeable almost immediately. After just a couple of days, I noticed that my gums felt "less sensitive" to the touch. I never even knew this was abnormal because they had always felt sensitive, but suddenly they felt better!?

I knew I was on to something at this point and I have continued this difficult elimination even beyond the 3 months. I have now gone 7 months without anything tomato-related in my diet and I have since had just 1 canker sore! Also, I got the sore when I caught a nasty head cold about a month ago.

I never would have considered something as healthy for you as a tomato as the source of what had made my life miserable since childhood. Whether it is the acidity or something else that my body just has trouble with, I'm not entirely sure. It could be a weird food allergy, but all I know is that I found the trigger for my life-long problem with canker sores and eliminating it from my diet has helped me tremendously.

I can't guarantee that it will be the same for you, but I encourage everyone who has issues with these pesky sores to look into removing all things tomato from your diet for a while and see if your flare-ups reduce. It was very difficult to totally eliminate tomato since it is in so many products, but if you watch your diet closely it gets easier. It has helped me tremendously so I hope it helps you too. (02/16/2010)

By jtgambit33

RE: Canker Sore Remedies

I find drinking pineapple juice is good for all mouth sores. (03/17/2010)

By Lady Bee

Health & Beauty Home RemediesFebruary 12, 2013
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