Why do I keep getting mouth ulcers?


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Kim Snowling Profile
Kim Snowling answered

Mouth ulcers are not usually infectious, which means they cannot be passed from person to person.

So you can continue to share glasses, use each other's cutlery and keep on kissing!

Most minor, single mouth ulcers are caused by accidentally biting the inside of your mouth whilst eating, or cutting yourself with sharp food, a tooth or a filling. Even using a toothbrush incorrectly can cause damage to your mouth and an ulcer to form.

Recurring ulcers can be caused by other sources including -

  • Stress and Anxiety
  • Hormonal Changes
  • Family History
  • Food Triggers
  • Stopping Smoking
  • Medical Conditions
  • Medications
  • Less Common Causes

  1. Stress and Anxiety - Some people experience ulcers during times of stress or when they are feeling particularly anxious.
  2. Hormonal Changes - Some women develop ulcers during their monthly period
  3. Family History - Around 40% of people who have recurring ulcers have a family history of this.
  4. Food Triggers - Eating things like chocolate, coffee, peanuts, almonds, strawberries, cheese, tomatoes or wheat flour can all increase your likelihood of getting a mouth ulcer.
  5. Stopping Smoking - This is a normal reaction when you give up smoking because your body is dealing with all the changes of chemicals circulating within your body.  This is a minor side-effect and should not put anyone off giving up smoking, as the long term benefits are far greater.
  6. Medical Conditions - You may have an underlying medical condition such as Vitamin B12 or Iron deficiency, Coeliac Disease, Crohn's Disease, or Reactive Arthritis. Any condition such as HIV or Lupus which attacks your immune system can cause the development of mouth ulcers.  Can I just say that I am not a medical practitioner and therefore if you have any concerns about your health, then you should see your GP.
  7. Medications - It can be a side-effect of some medications like Ibuprofen, Asprin, Nicorandil (which treats angina) and Beta-blockers (which treats a number of heart and blood flow conditions).  If this is the case, then speak to your GP. They maybe able to prescribe you an alternative medication.
  8. Less Common Causes - Herpes Simplex Infection: This is a highly-contagious virus, also known as the ' cold sore virus', which causes cold sores on the mouth and genitals.  Skin Conditions: Such as Lichen Planus and Angina Bullosa Haemorrhagica.  Gastrointestinal Disease: For example, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease. Sore Throat, Chicken Pox and Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease.
If you keep on getting recurring mouth ulcers, I would recommend that you see your GP for further investigation as you may have an underlying medical condition or food allergy.

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