Canker Sores (Mouth Ulcers)
by Judith Cobb
Aphthous stomatitis or canker sores, almost
everyone has experienced these painful outbreaks in the mouth. Often
when there is one sore there are more, sometimes up to fifteen or twenty.
The size of these mouth ulcers can range from almost nothing to over one
inch. Canker sores can appear on the tongue, inside of cheeks, lips or gums
and usually begin as a little crater surrounded by slightly raised concentric
rings of yellow then red. Healing can take from four to twenty days.
According to the Merck Manual, the cause of cankers is unknown, but
weakened localized immune function seems to be involved, as do deficiencies of iron, B 12 and folic acid. Other influencing factors may be poor oral
hygiene, food allergies, especially to chocolate, stress and fatigue.
Cankers are contagious.
So, what can be done to prevent them and/or to make them heal faster?
As always, diet is very iniportant. Eliminating sugar, dairy (except
butter), refined grains (white bread and pasta), alcohol, coffee, tea, and pop
can only help to increase the vitality of the body and raise the immune
system to a more functional state. Focus on eating fresh vegetables, some
fruit, whole grains, limited amounts of animal protein (preferably chicken
breast, lamb, or salmon), lentils and legumes with lots of "good" water to drink.
During an outbreak, the diet will need to consist of softer foods like
homemade pureed vegetable soups (without tomatoes. please), baked or steamed fruit and tofu drinks just to reduce wear, tear and pain while eating.
In the event of an outbreak, each canker needs to be gently dabbed with
tea tree oil
. Use a fresh Q-tip for each dab.
Tea tree oil is antiseptic which
means it will kill bacteria.
The entire immune system will then need building. Acidophilus
friendly bacteria, need to be added to the diet. VS-C
is also a must
combination of herbs stimulates the immune response to fight bacterial
infections. It is available in liquid
form. Initially, all three of these
items are used in fairly generous amounts, and when the outbreak subsides,
the tea tree oil is discontinued, and the acidophilus and VS-C are reduced to
small maintenance amounts.
At the very first indication of an impending outbreak, the herbs and oil
are increased back up to the original amounts and used until the outbreak is
cleared. It is most common for outbreaks to become less frequent, less
severe, and of shorter duration.
Within just a few months, it is quite normal for outbreaks to be thwarted
at the first sign and be completely controlled/healed within twenty-four
hours. Yes! Miracles really do happen!