Mouth ulcers or more commonly known as canker sores is a condition where the inside of the lip, base of the gums and tongue are plagued by tiny, round lesions. They are different from cold sores which only appear outside the mouth, specifically around the lips and they are highly contagious. Cankers sores clear up in a matter of few weeks, even without any specific treatment. In case they become remarkably painful or persist for longer than two weeks, schedule an appointment with you doctor. He may prescribe you a therapy containing minerals and vitamins which can helps reduce the infection, prevent them from reappearing and help relieve the pain and overall discomfort.
Zinc is vital for immune function, metabolism of lipids, proteins and carbohydrates and is involved in tissue repair and healing of the wounds, so zinc deficiency is known as one of various factors leading to outbreak of the sores. Recommended daily intake of zinc for an adult man is 12 mg and 9 mg for an adult woman.
It is generally taken by the mouth, but may be administered by injection if deemed necessary by your doctor. Other methods of use consist of zinc supplements which contain a number of forms of zinc including zinc sulfate, zinc acetate and zinc gluconate or zinc-containing cold lozenges. A number of foods contain zinc. Oyster, for example, contain the highest amount of zinc per serving, then red meats and poultry, then beans, nuts, seafood like crabs and lobsters and fortified cereals.
Vitamin B12 and folic acid, also known as folate, or B9 vitamin are very important for the metabolic processes in the body, production of red blood cells and care of the immune system. Low immunity leads to infections, which can in turn cause the onset of canker sores.
They can be used in a pill or a tablet form, standalone or as a part of a multivitamin tablet or sublingual pastilles. In dietary supplements, B12 is mostly present as cyanocobalamin and methylcobalamin, which the body readily converts to active forms and later consumes. B12 and folic acid are naturally found in animal products such as meat, poultry, fish and eggs and fortified cereal, which can vary in formulation, so be sure to check the content labels. Niacin and niacinamide are some of the forms of vitamin B3. Just like with the B12 and B9 vitamins, lack of niacin and niacinamide can lead to canker sores. They are found in in numerous vitamin B complex supplements and in foods such as meat, fish, eggs, beans, green vegetables and even yeast.
Vitamin C is known as a strong antioxidant and is used by the body for maintaining bones, cartilage, skin, blood vessels and teeth. It is taken by the mouth as pill or by injection if needed. The recommended daily intake 90 mg for men and 75 mg for women. If you are a smoker, you may benefit from a higher dose of 250 mg.
Most people get their daily dose of vitamin C from citrus fruits like lemons, oranges and apples rather than taking supplements, but the high acidity in those juices is confirmed as one of many factors contributing to development of canker sores.