20 Effective Home Remedies for Canker Sores

November 26, 2019

20 Effective Home Remedies for Canker Sores

Anyone with canker sores would definitely be looking for effective remedies to treat them. After all; canker sores are extremely painful and they don’t allow you to eat or drink certain foods. Acidic or sour foods like citrusy fruits and tomatoes tend to aggravate the pain caused by these sores.

 Let us study the causes, symptoms, and effective home remedies for canker sores.

Causes of Canker Sores

Simple canker sores can occur due to certain foods like salty chips or hard pretzels, certain fruits, as well as dental issues like ill-fitting braces or dentures. Accidentally biting the inner part of the cheek or tongue can also cause canker sores. Complex canker sores may have a more serious underlying medical issue like Celiac disease or Crohn’s disease. Certain vitamin/mineral deficiencies can also cause canker sores.

Canker sores and cold sores are not the same. Cold sores are caused by a virus, namely the Herpes simplex. Both types of sores have similar symptoms in that they are characterized by painful sores on the inside of the mouth. 

Symptoms of Canker Sores

  • Painful sores or ulcers on parts of the inner cheek, tongue, gums, lips, or throat.
  • Often, before the sores develop, you might feel an irritation, a rough spot or a burning sensation in the area.

20 Effective Home Remedies for Canker Sores

1.Yogurt Heals & Prevents Canker Sores

The acidophilus bacteria in yogurt can heal and also prevent canker sores. Eat yogurt and also apply it to the sores. Dr. Jerome Z. Litt MD, recommends eating just 4 tablespoons of unflavored yogurt daily to increase the good bacteria in the system. This simple trick can prevent canker sores. Look for yogurts with live cultures.

2. German Chamomile Soothes Canker Sores

This is a wonderful remedy for canker sores, gum irritation, gingivitis, cold sores, eczema, and even psoriasis. And this is no surprise; chamomile is a soothing, healing herb that can provide quick results in reducing pain caused by all kinds of sores. Brew a few tea bags of German chamomile and apply the warm compress onto the painful area.

3. Buttermilk Eliminates the Pain of Canker Sores

This is a gentle and safe remedy for painful canker sores and it has been around for many decades. We don’t know for sure how it works, but it quickly eliminates the pain and soreness caused by canker sores. Swish it around the mouth several times a day to eliminate pain and soreness.

4. Use Baking Soda Instead of SLS Based Toothpastes to Avoid Canker Sores

This is a dentist-recommended treatment for canker sores. Replace your SLS (sodium laureth sulfate) toothpaste with baking soda to brush the teeth. Chances are: you will not get canker sores again! 

5. Aloe Vera Gel Disinflames Canker Sores

Some dentists recommend aloe gel to get rid of the burning pain caused by canker sores. Cut open an aloe leaf and apply the gel directly to the sore. Repeat this as often as needed. Aloe provides an anti-inflammatory action that stops the pain.

6. Licorice Heals Canker Sores Quickly

A study conducted on licorice-containing patches marketed under the brand name Cankermelts® showed that licorice made the sores smaller faster than the sores that were left untreated.

7. Bananas as a Folk Remedy for Canker Sores

This is a folk-remedy for mouth ulcers and canker sores. Hold a slice of ripe banana for 4-5 minutes against the sore. This will help with the pain and also speed up the healing process. No harm in trying: certainly tastes better than any medicine!

8. Strained String Bean Baby Food Helps with Canker Sores

As funny and surprising as it may sound: this remedy does work according to testimonials from many people. Use the juice from the canned beans to rinse out the mouth and say goodbye to canker sores! The remedy also helps with the pain and in preventing the sores in the first place.

9. Sauerkraut Juice Heals Canker Sores Fast

Perhaps it is due to the brine filled with probiotic goodness! The juice of sauerkraut heals canker sores faster and can even prevent their occurrence.

10. Kiwis Help Prevent Canker Sores

Don’t wait for canker sores to show up. Eat a couple of kiwis from time to time and chances are that you won’t get them at all. There is no scientific claim backing this remedy but perhaps the vitamins in kiwi are a preventive remedy for ulcers and sores.

11. Heal Canker Sores Quickly with L-Lysine

Some people get canker sores all their lives and many times they even battle up to as many as 10 sores at a time. Chewing L-lysine tablets can quickly speed up the healing process and even prevent recurrence. So, the next time you develop ulcers or sores in the mouth, instead of oral corticosteroids, go for l-lysine supplements.

12. Alum/Styptic Pencils Help Stop Canker Sores from Bleeding

Styptic pencils contain alum or aluminum potassium sulfate. When crushed and made into a paste, they can help stop bleeding from large wounds, cuts etc. Many have had relief with styptic pencils for canker sores. You can also crush alum and dissolve the powder in water. Swish the solution around the mouth a couple of times to eliminate canker sores.

13. Neutralize Canker Sore Pain Away with Alkaline Food

The number one cause of canker sores is acidity or the consumption of acidic foods. Try to eat more alkaline foods to balance the system-pH. You can also take antacids like Pepto-Bismol or Tums and even apply them directly to the sores to reduce the pain.

14. Milk of Magnesia for Canker Sore Relief

Swish some Milk of Magnesia in the mouth to get relief from sores, ulcers, and other oral irritations. 

15. Coat Canker Sores with Lemon Balm to Relieve the Pain

The thought of applying lemon to a painful sore may not be appealing, but this is actually an herb with a lemony smell, and this remedy has been recommended by Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum, MD. Ease canker sore pain using a thick coat of lemon balm herbs.

16. Vitamin C Heals Canker Sores Quickly

Vitamin C heals canker sores quickly. At the first sign of a sore, take up to 1000 mg of vitamin C per day and then 500 mg for the next three days. Dr. Craig Zunka, DDS recommends looking for a supplement that contains ‘bioflavonoids’ as well, because vitamin C alone may not do the trick.

17. Get Rid of Vitamin B12 Deficiency to Prevent Canker Sores

People who get recurrent canker sores could be deficient in vitamin B 12. This vitamin, which is also known as cobalamin, is soluble in water and found in milk, liver, fish, and eggs. Taking a supplement may help, particularly if you do not consume these foods. You can go for a B-complex supplement which also contains vitamins B1, B2, B6, and folic acid. These are also beneficial in fighting canker sores.

18. Salt Water Gargling as a Home Remedy for Canker Sores

A simple yet powerful remedy for canker sores is salt water gargling. Heat up some water and add a generous amount of sea salt or rock salt to it. Test the temperature to ensure it won’t burn your tongue, although the hotter it is, the better. Swish around the mouth three times a day until the sore subsides.

19. Calendula Tea Soothes & Disinflames Canker Sores

Make an oral rinse with calendula tea. Brew a couple of tea bags and use the warm tea as a mouthwash to eliminate mouth ulcers, sores, and other oral problems. Calendula is a soothing herb that stops pain and inflammation immediately.

20. Homeopathic Remedy Borax 12 X Potency for Canker Sores

For those who get canker sores repeatedly, homeopathic Borax can help. 


Canker sores are painful and can impact one’s quality of life. Avoid eating foods like salty chips, pretzels, and acidic fruits like strawberries, pineapples, tomatoes, and oranges. The above home remedies can help in speeding up the healing process, but if there's something else that has worked for you, please comment below and let us know!


1 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2897872/

2 The People's Pharmacy Quick and Handy Home Remedies: Q&As By Joe Graedon, Terry Graedon

3 https://dawsondental.ca/does-aloe-vera-reduce-mouth-sores/

4 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18348383

5 https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/bs-xpm-2003-02-23-0302240385-story.html

6 https://www.consumerlab.com/answers/can-vitamin-b-12-help-prevent-or-reduce-canker-sores/cancer-sores-aphthous-stomatitis/

7 https://www.ameritasinsight.com/wellness/health-and-wellness/fast-relief-from-canker-sores

8 The Doctors Book of Home Remedies: Quick Fixes, Clever Techniques, By Editors of Prevention

Medical Disclaimer

The content found on this website is for informational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Information and statements regarding health related benefits of certain ingredients are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information provided is not meant to substitute the advice provided by your personal physician or other medical professional. Do not use the information found within this website to self-diagnose any medical conditions or treat any health problems or diseases. The information provided is not intended to prescribe or be taken as medical advice.

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Also in Blog

10 Exfoliating Face Masks from Common Kitchen Ingredients
10 Exfoliating Face Masks from Common Kitchen Ingredients

December 17, 2019

Tired of shelling out a small fortune for a face mask? Check out these 10 natural, DIY recipes, to exfoliate your face and leave your skin glowing!

Read More

Bone Broth Benefits & How to Make It
Bone Broth Benefits & How to Make It

December 11, 2019

Why take collagen, chondroitin & glucosamine supplements when you can easily reap the benefits from your own homemade bone broth? Discover how to easily & inexpensively make it and why it's so good for you, in this article.

Read More

Get Natural Relief from Sunburns with These 15 Cooling Remedies
Get Natural Relief from Sunburns with These 15 Cooling Remedies

December 05, 2019

Accidents do happen, and so do sunburns! Learn how to quickly soothe & calm a sunburn with these 15 natural remedies you can easily implement from home.

Read More