Canker sore, also known as an aphthous ulcer, is a painful, small, shallow lesion that develops on the inside of the mouth, on the gums, on the tongue, or on the lips. They are not contagious, but they can be uncomfortable and make eating, speaking, and even brushing your teeth a challenge. Canker sores can occur at any age, but they are more common in teenagers and young adults.
In this article, we will explore the common signs and symptoms of canker sores.
Painful Sore or Lesion
The most common symptom of canker sores is a painful sore or lesion on the inside of the mouth. The sore is usually small, round or, oval-shaped, and white or yellow in color with a red border. The sore may be sensitive to the touch, making it difficult to eat, drink, or talk.
Tingling or Burning Sensation
Before a canker sore develops, you may experience a tingling or burning sensation in the area where the sore will form. This sensation may last for a few hours or a day before the sore appears.
Swollen Lymph Nodes
Canker sores may cause swollen lymph nodes in the neck, which may be tender to the touch. This is because the immune system is fighting off the infection that is causing the canker sore.
Difficulty Eating and Drinking
Canker sores can make it difficult to eat and drink, especially if the sore is located on the tongue or on the roof of the mouth. The sore may become irritated when food or drink comes into contact with it, causing discomfort or pain.
Canker sores can also make it difficult to speak, especially if the sore is located on the tongue or on the inside of the lip. The sore may rub against the teeth or other parts of the mouth when speaking, causing pain or discomfort.
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In some cases, canker sores may be accompanied by a fever. This is because the body is trying to fight off the infection that is causing the canker sore.
Canker sores can be accompanied by fatigue or a general feeling of being unwell. This is because the immune system is working to fight off the infection that is causing the canker sore.
Some people may experience recurring canker sores, which can be frustrating and painful. Recurring canker sores may be a sign of an underlying medical condition, such as a weakened immune system or an autoimmune disorder.
While canker sores usually occur one at a time, some people may experience multiple sores at once. These sores may be located in different areas of the mouth and may be more painful than a single sore.
Duration of Symptoms
Canker sores usually last for one to two weeks before they heal on their own. If the sore does not heal after two weeks, or if it is accompanied by other symptoms such as fever or fatigue, it is important to seek medical attention.
Canker sores are a common and painful condition that can occur in people of all ages. The most common symptoms of canker sores are a painful sore or lesion, a tingling or burning sensation, swollen lymph nodes, difficulty eating and drinking, difficulty speaking, fever, fatigue, recurring sores, multiple sores, and the duration of symptoms. While canker sores usually heal on their own within a week or two, it is important to seek medical attention if the sore does not heal or is accompanied by other symptoms.