Canker Sores, Mouth Ulcers and Recurrent Aphthous Ulcerations (RAUs)


There are a number of different types of mouth ulcers. When mouth ulcers keep coming back, they are commonly called canker sores. The scientific name for canker sores is recurrent aphthous ulcers (RAUs). They often come and go, returning during stress or medical illnesses in some people. Canker sores are the most frequently occurring ulcerative disease of the lining of the mouth and affect up to 50% of people.

As classically described, canker sores are painful shallow mouth ulcers. Cancer sores usually occur in healthy persons but also are seen with problems with their immune system. They are typically located on the cheeks, gums, and tongue.

Some other possible causes of canker sores include vitamin deficiencies, changes in mouth bacteria, psychosocial stress and a lowered immune system. 

Most canker sores are called minor forms (minor canker sores) and are less than 1 cm (about ⅓ inch) in diameter. Minor canker sores usually heal within 1 week. Severe forms of canker sores are larger than 1 cm in diameter, may take more than 30 days to heal, and may cause scarring of the mouth.

Treatment of Canker Sores

A variety of medications are used to treat canker sores. Medications that are directly on the sores include softening agents like Zilactin Cold Sore Relief Gel or Orabase Oral paste. Medications such as chlorhexidine mouthwash that reduce bacteria in the mouth are used. Stronger treatments for canker sores that are placed inside of the mouth include steroids and antibiotics. In addition, Magic Mouthwash, a compounded medication that contains the numbing drug lidocaine is sometimes used for treatment of canker sores. Since these medications only stay in the mouth for a short time, they can be less effective for treating canker sores. 

Bocaliner has the potential to improve the effectiveness of these treatments. Since Bocaliner increases the amount and time that oral gels and mouthwashes stay inside of the mouth, it may help relieve pain from canker sores, and help them heal faster.