Canker Sores

Apthous stomatitis is the “medical” term for the mysterious sores that most people have experienced at least once in their life. It is inflammation of the oral mucosa due to local or systemic factors which may involve the buccal mucosa, palate, tongue, floor of the mouth, and the gingivae. The most common contributing factors I have seen in my clinic are food sensitivities, especially gluten, dairy and sugar, sodium lauryl sulfate sensitivity which is found in toothpaste (when individuals with canker sores changed to a tooth paste that did not contain sodium lauryl sulfate, the number of aphthous ulcers fell by 64%), a weakened immune system due to a chronic low grade infection or food sensitivities, and trauma to the tissue like when you “bite your tongue” , braces rubbing etc.

Naturopathic Approach

A naturopathic approach to treating someone with canker sores is to find out what the underlying cause is. Since food sensitivities seem to be the number one contributor from what I’ve seen, I may recommend a food sensitivity test or a modified elimination diet. I may recommend oil pulling if a bacterial overgrowth is suspected or a gut restoration program since the food tube starts in the mouth.