Winter is in full swing in New York, as we could tell by the Valentine’s Day weekend cold front. And the CDC recently announced that the flu has become widespread in our state. One thing has a tendency to appear along with fevers and colds is the dreaded cold sore. Of course, there are other types of mouth sores that are just as painful, such as the canker sore. How do you know what’s what and what causes it?
Technically, the cold sore is caused by a virus, HSV. Once exposed to the virus, many people develop antibodies that prevent future breakouts. However, 40% of adults have repeat occurrences in their lifetime. The virus can be triggered when you get a fever (which is why they are sometimes called fever blisters) or a cold. Other things that can trigger a breakout are stress, allergies, and sunburn. There are several antiviral drugs that can speed up the healing process, so check out your local pharmacy.
Canker sores are more common than cold sores and they can be just as annoying. A canker sore is that little pain that can show up on your tongue, in your cheek, and on your gum. The jury is still out on just what causes a canker sore, but triggers can include stress, a minor injury, over brushing your teeth, food sensitivities, vitamin deficiencies, or accidental cheek bite. Some underlying causes might be certain diseases and conditions, such as Crohn’s disease, HIV, and celiac disease. Though they usually clear up on their own, see your dentist or doctor is pain persists.
There are some sores that are caused by issues with your teeth, such as an improper fitting denture, or a broken tooth or filling. When your dentures are loose, the constant rubbing in all the wrong places can create a sore spot. When you chip a tooth, the gum that is near the tooth might get caught along the sharp edge when you speak or eat. Both of these issues can be remedied by seeing your dentist for a quick fix.
While canker and cold sores are sometimes inevitable, mouth sores from dental problems can be avoided. At Island Dental Associates, we can fix whatever problems in your mouth need fixing. When it comes to loose dentures, we can do refits and relines, often in the same day, to give you relief from any sores that the ill-fit may have caused. And when it comes to broken or chipped teeth, our cosmetic dentistry services can make your teeth smooth and chip-free once again.
Winter won’t be around much longer, so keep warm and try to stay healthy and mouth-sore-free. But if it’s something that we can help with, give us a call and we’ll have you feeling better in no time at all.