The mouth ulcer is a small but painful lesion in the mouth, inner cheek, tongue or gums [1, 2].

Also called canker sore or aphthous ulcer, mouth ulcer is often confused with cold sores. But this one is not contagious, and usually does not need medical treatment. It can heal on its own within one to two weeks [1].

It also looks different. Cold sores are pus-filled blisters. Mouth ulcers are open lesions enclosed within a white or yellowish ring [3].

The exact cause of mouth ulcer is unknown. But in most cases, it is a result of damage or trauma to the lining inside the mouth. The reasons can be poor-fitting dentures, over-brushing, or accidental biting in the mouth. [2, 3]

Mouth ulcer usually goes away on its own after a few days or weeks. But it can make eating and talking difficult. So, you might want to get immediate relief using some home remedies for mouth ulcer.

Home Remedies for Mouth Ulcer

1. Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera is abundant in vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino acids, and saponins. It has many therapeutic purposes that researchers recognized since the ancient times [4].

Dentists use it to treat various types of acute mouth lesions. These are herpes sores, mouth corner crackers and mouth ulcers [5].

It does so without leaving a bad taste in your mouth or causing a stinging sensation [5].

Your gum tissues may have scratch or injury due to hard foods, toothpick, hard foods, or chemicals. Aloe vera has a soothing effect of those tissues [5].

Aloe vera contains carbohydrates called polysaccharides. These properties stimulate the enzyme activities and boost the immunity [5].

It also has a polysaccharide called glucomannan. It promotes the activity and spread of growth factor receptors. And in turn, it facilitates the production of collagen [5, 6].

Iranian scientists conducted a study in 2012. In that research, 40 patients with mild mouth ulcer took either aloe vera gel or placebo [7].

Those who received aloe vera had a more significant reduction in the size of wound and pain than the other group [7].

How you may use aloe vera to soothe mouth ulcer:

Break one aloe vera leaf. Squeeze out the gel. Apply gel on mouth ulcer. Do this remedy three times a day until mouth ulcer disappears.

Read More: 11+ Health Benefits of Aloe Vera Oil (Backed by Scientific Evidence)

2. Vitamin B12

Nutritional deficiency is dangerous for the health. As you know, many of the bodies’ processes rely on our daily intake of nutrients.

Lack of certain vitamins or minerals can also pave the way for the onset of ailments.

Deficiency in vitamin B12, for example, is one of the factors that has a link to mouth ulcers [8].

American researchers performed a clinical review. It reported that lower dietary intake of this B vitamin resulted in recurrent cases of canker sore [9].

This review involved 100 subjects. Each of them has experienced at least three episodes of mouth ulcer in the last 12 months [9].

Enough intake of vitamin B12 can be a great strategy to reduce the frequency and duration of this illness [9].

Similar results we got from a 2009 study. In that study, 58 people with recurrent canker sores participated. 31 of them received vitamin B12 tablets while 27 people had to take a placebo [10].

Those who took vitamin B12 tablets got better results. They experienced reduced number of ulcers, episode duration, and levels of pain [10].

It concluded that vitamin B12 is a “simple, inexpensive and low-risk” treatment. Yet, it’s effective for those complaining of recurrent aphthous stomatitis [10].

Ways to consume vitamin B12 for mouth ulcer:

Include in your diet foods that are rich in vitamin B12 such as meat, eggs, poultry, and dairy products. Foods such as soy milk and cereals are also rich in vitamin B12.

Read More: 8 Vitamins for Acne Prone Skin That You Should Know

3. ChamomileChamomile

A cup of chamomile tea can do so much in making you feel better.

When you’re feeling stressed out, this favorite beverage can soothe your senses. It also helps clear your busy mind.

It doesn’t come as a surprise. Because its dried flowers are already popular as a sedative and antispasmodic agent. [11]

Apart from this, you can also use chamomile to bid goodbye to the problem of mouth ulcer.

There was a study on rats suffering from oral ulcers. It reduced the size of a wound, ease inflammation, and promote collagen repair in those rats. [12]

The oral wounds in the rat subjects healed almost completely in only ten days. [12]

Chamomile alleviates symptoms and discomfort, and speeds up healing. Besides, it prevents further infection due to canker sores.

Try this chamomile leaves gargle to soothe mouth ulcer:

Steep 1 tsp of chamomile leaves in a cup of hot water. Let mixture cool. Strain mixture. Gargle this three times a day until condition improves.

Read More: 14 Health Benefits of Chamomile Tea (Backed by Science)

4. SageSage

Sage has always been a go-to solution for various ailments, including canker sore.

Scientific research has proved sage contains significant anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive properties. [13, 14, 15, 16]

It means that it can reduce inflammation, which in turn can relieve pain caused by oral lesions.

At the same time, it also blocks the signals of pain in the brain, “numbing” the skin. So you will not get bothered by the ulcers inside your mouth.

All these actions can be the results of the presence of ursolic acid in sage. [13]

Simple use of sage for mouth ulcers:

Add 3 tsp of sage leaves to 2 cups of boiling water. Allow steeping for 15 minutes. Let it cool. Strain the solution. Use this to rinse your mouth three times daily for one week.

Read More: 15 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Herpes and How to Use Them

5. Peppermint

Peppermint is one of the herbs that’s considered useful in dentistry. [17]

It’s often used to treat bad breath and other dental issues. [17]

Did you know that you can also use peppermint to soothe your pain and discomfort caused by mouth ulcer?

Peppermint can help as it is an antimicrobial. It can prevent oral bacteria from infecting the mouth lesion. [18]

At the same time, it is rich in phytochemicals. Thus, it can boost immune defense and avoid recurrence of this problem. [18]

When you have a stronger immunity, there are fewer chances of ulcers to develop inside your mouth.

Try this peppermint oil recipe for mouth ulcer:

In a bowl, mix 2 drops of peppermint oil and 1 tsp of olive oil. Transfer mixture to a small cup. Take a small amount from it. Gargle oil mixture for one minute. Repeat remedy twice daily until canker sores subside.

Read More: 8 Reasons to Use Peppermint Oil for Hair

6. Coconut Oil

You won’t consider a coconut tree as a “tree of life” without good reason [19].

Almost all its parts have a practical use in various industries, and even in medicine [20].

Its oil, meanwhile, can cure an array of health problems including oral ulcers.

Virgin coconut oil is an effective treatment for lesions inside the mouth [21].

Half of the 20 patients who participated had to use 0.1 percent triamcinolone acetonide. And the second one used virgin coconut oil [21].

Results show that both methods were effective in healing mouth ulcers. But virgin coconut oil resulted in a quicker reduction of ulcer size and pain relief [21].

That’s not all. Oil pulling with coconut oil can also combat bacteria inside the mouth before they cause any harm [22].

If you have oral lesions, you can rinse with coconut oil. It will prevent mouth ulcers from becoming infected.

Here’s how to use coconut oil for canker sores:

Gargle with 1 tsp of coconut oil for one minute. Rinse mouth with water. Repeat remedy twice daily for three to four days.

Read More: 11 Reasons to Use Coconut Oil for Sunburn

7. Clove Oil

Clove essential oil comes from the dried flower buds of this plant.

For many years, people have been using it to speed up healing and provide pain relief in many types of issues [23].

Folk healers from Brazil often recommend this oil for controlling oral bacteria. The bacteria can cause dental problems including infections inside the mouth [24].

Oral pathogens like Streptococcus mutans infect oral lesions in the cheeks or gums. Clove oil’s active compounds may kill those pathogens before they attack [25].

As you know, clove is a popular remedy for a toothache, thanks to its analgesic effects.

With this said, it’s safe to assume that clove oil can also help provide relief from pain caused by mouth ulcers.

Learn how to use clove oil to treat mouth ulcer:

Combine 2 drops of clove oil and 1 tsp of olive oil. Apply a small amount on mouth ulcers. Let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing mouth with water. Follow this procedure once or twice a day for four days.

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8. Honey

That sweet thing you add in your lemon juice or pastries?

You can use this to stop the annoying problem of canker sores finally.

It is another one of honey’s countless benefits for the health and skin.

A team of researchers from Saudi Arabia conducted a research in 2014. It reported the application of honey four times a day for five days could heal chronic cases of canker sores [26].

The result was a significant reduction in wound size and pain, as well as accelerated healing [26].

Because honey is a proven antibacterial that works well in inhibiting oral bacteria. So, it can prevent any further infections too [27, 28, 29].

A simple way to use honey for mouth ulcer:

Dab a small amount of honey on the canker sore. Wait for five minutes before rinsing with water. Repeat four times a day for five days.

Read More: 10 Health Benefits of Honey (Backed by Science)

9. Garlic

You can find garlic in the list of household remedies for a wide range of ailments.

It’s no wonder it’s also considered a potent cure for canker sore.

Many studies have confirmed this herb to have inhibitory effects on oral bacteria. It means that it can help curb infection of mouth ulcers [30, 31, 32, 33, 34].

Application of garlic on the mouth ulcer can give a little bit of a stinging sensation. But don’t worry; it goes away after a while.

If you are not able to tolerate the pain, you can reduce the amount that you apply on the canker sore.

How you can use garlic to heal mouth ulcer:

Press crushed garlic on the canker sore. Do this for 10 to 15 seconds. Take a break and wash off with water. Repeat twice daily until canker sore is gone.

10. Yogurt

Yogurt is a healthy snack that everyone should eat more often.

It is rich in nutrients. Also, it comes with good bacteria that can maintain or restore balance in the digestive tract.

That’s why, traditional healers use it to relieve all sorts of digestive ailments and issues.

Now, for those who are complaining of canker sores, yogurt can also come to your rescue.

There was a study in the New York University College of Dentistry. It recommended yogurt as a treatment for common oral lesions such as mouth ulcer [35].

Its probiotics prevent the harmful bacteria from penetrating inside the wound. Thus, they can’t cause infection.

How to use yogurt on your mouth ulcer:

Apply yogurt on canker sore throughout the day. Do this daily until condition improves.

Read More: White Bumps on Lips: Causes and Natural Remedies

11. Milk of MagnesiaMilk-of-Magnesia

You might have used it as an antacid for acid reflux and indigestion, and as a remedy for constipation. But milk of magnesia can help relieve canker sores as well [36].

This liquid suspension consists of magnesium hydroxide. It can help speed up the healing process of the mouth ulcer [36].

It also reduces pain and inflammation of the oral lesions [36].

You should use this technique after using hydrogen peroxide. It’s another popular canker sore remedy [36].

You can also use milk of magnesia on its own.

How you may use milk of magnesia to treat your canker sores:

Use a cotton swab to dab a few drops of milk of magnesia on your canker sores. Rinse mouth after 15 minutes. Do this remedy three to four times a day until oral lesions are gone.

Read More: How to Get Rid of Canker Sores: 12 Remedies for Quick Relief

12. Echinacea

One of the herbs often used in dentistry is Echinacea [37].

People often use it as an alternative treatment for many types of oral health problems [37].

For canker sores, Echinacea can be quite helpful. Because it is a proven anti-inflammatory agent, as reported in several studies [38, 39, 40].


Because it is also an antibacterial, it can help prevent infection in the oral lesions [40].

It even works on bacterial strains that have grown resistant to antibiotics [40].

How to prepare Echinacea solution to cure mouth ulcers :

Mix 4 ml of Echinacea with ½ cup of warm water. Gargle this solution for 2-3 minutes. Repeat procedure three times a day for one to two weeks.

13. Coriander

Coriander is quite famous not only as a great spice but also a good home remedy for mouth ulcer. [41]

Starting from high blood pressure to bacterial infections, it can heal a lot of diseases.

Its anti-ulcer properties help prevent the growth of those painful lesions. It also speeds up the healing process.

Coriander is excellent at boosting your immune system. besides, it will reduce the pain and inflammation due to mouth ulcer.

Try the coriander seeds wash to heal your canker sores:

Take a bowl and boil a cup of water. Add 1 tsp of coriander seeds in the water. Let them simmer for ten minutes. Strain out the coriander seeds and use the water to wash your mouth. Repeat this process four times per day until you heal.

Read More: 7 Coriander Seeds Substitutes That You Need to Know!

14. Baking Soda

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is perfect for treating mouth ulcers. [42]

A mouth ulcer is often the result of acid formation due to the consumption of acidic food and beverages.

Baking soda is excellent in this case as it helps to neutralize the acid formation.

Baking soda relieves your mouth from the pain of ulcer by speeding up the healing process.

It is a fantastic option for maintaining oral hygiene as it fights off bacteria and germs of your mouth.

Learn how to use baking soda to get rid of mouth ulcer:

Add water to baking powder to create a paste. Apply the paste on your canker sores. Repeat three to four times a day.

Read More: Baking Soda for Acne: 12 Easy Ways You Can Use

15. Green Tea

Green tea, your favorite option for losing weight is also an excellent remedy for mouth ulcer.

It contains active properties like amino acids, caffeine, flavonoids, and polyphenols. Thus, it can prevent inflammation while boosting the healing process. [43]

Green tea can inhibit the growth of the bacteria responsible for the mouth ulcer.

It can also reduce the pain and discomfort because of the canker sores.

How to use green tea to soothe your mouth ulcer:

Put a green tea bag in the refrigerator and let it chill for 15 minutes. Place the tea bag on your mouth ulcer for 20 minutes. Continue this procedure two times per day until you get well.

Read More: Green Tea for Acne: How Effective?

When to See a Doctor

Mouth ulcers don’t stay longer. But, if you leave them untreated for weeks or more they could be severe. You should see a doctor if the pain becomes unbearable.

You might also experience fever, fatigue, cellulitis, and sore spreading outside your mouth. Let your doctor know about these symptoms. Your doctor can prescribe you further medications based on these symptoms.


The mouth ulcer is annoying and can cause severe pain and inflammation. You might find it difficult to tolerate.

These home remedies will help ease the pain and discomfort caused by canker sores.

They need minimal ingredients that are easy to find. So, you won’t have a hard time putting these natural remedies together.

Hope this article was helpful. For any queries or confusions, feel free to ask us by leaving a comment in the comments section below.

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