Ulcers of the gums are caused by several things, including biting the insides of your cheeks or lips, irritation from braces or other objects in the mouth, brushing your teeth too vigorously, or chewing tobacco. Sometimes called canker sores, these ulcers are not contagious (and shouldn't be confused with cold sores, which are caused by a virus), but they are often irritating and painful. If you have an ulcer on your gums, you may wonder if there is anything you can do at home to relieve the pain and help speed up the healing process. If so, use the following two-step home remedy for treating your ulcer using natural ingredients.
Ingredients You Will Need
Before you begin, you will need to gather the ingredients below. You can find these at natural health stores, some department stores, and pharmacies.
- table salt
- licorice extract
- peppermint oil
The salt in this treatment helps thoroughly cleanse the area of food particles and bacteria. It also helps draw out the inflammation to reduce the swelling and pain.
Licorice extract helps treat ulcers in several ways. It is antibacterial, it reduces the swelling around the ulcer, and it relieves the pain and discomfort. It also stimulates your body's immune system to promote faster healing of the lesion.
The peppermint oil used in this remedy serves as an antibacterial to keep the ulcer from becoming infected. It also relieves the pain with its cooling, anti-inflammatory properties, decreasing your sensation of the discomfort caused by the opening
Step 1: Apply a Salt and Herbal Paste to the Ulcer
In the saucer or bowl, combine a teaspoon of salt with three drops of peppermint oil and a quarter of a teaspoon of licorice extract. Let the salt dissolve slightly for a few minutes. The consistency of the paste should be slightly runny. If it is too dry, add another drop of peppermint oil. If it is too runny, add a small pinch of salt.
Once you have the right consistency, dip and coat one end of a cotton swab in the paste. Apply a thick coat of the mixture directly to the ulcer as well as the area surrounding it.
Leave the paste on for about five minutes. Then, rinse your mouth with cool water for about 30 seconds. Spit it out, then go on to the next step.
Step 2: Rinse with a Homemade Mouthwash
This step not only furthers the treatment of the ulcer, but it also helps remove food particles and kill germs inside your mouth that could affect the ulcer.
Stir a tablespoon of salt into a glass of warm water. Let it dissolve in the liquid for about 10 minutes. Then, add 10 drops of peppermint oil and a teaspoon of licorice extract, stirring thoroughly after the addition of each one.
Rinse your mouth with half of the mixture for about a minute, concentrating on the area of your gum where the ulcer is located. Spit out the mixture. Stir the remaining mouthwash to ensure the ingredients are evenly dispersed, then rinse with the second half for an additional minute.
Spit the mouthwash out and wait about a half an hour to give the ingredients additional time to work. Then, brush and floss your teeth as usual, being careful not to irritate the sore gum tissue.
Using the above home remedy twice a day can soothe your symptoms and help the ulcer heal more quickly. However, if you do not see any improvement or if you see any unusual discharge, you may want to make an appointment for general dental care. A dentist will examine your ulcer and discuss your treatment options.