Mouth ulcer - ouch!

Mouth ulcer - ouch!

I'm really careful about my dental hygiene. I brush twice a day and make sure to floss at night. I even wear a mouth guard to keep me from clenching my teeth while I'm asleep. So imagine my surprise when I had a sharp pain at the back of my mouth. My tongue found a swollen lump, and I immediately became concerned.

What could it be?

An abscess?

Bone fragments from my wisdom tooth extraction?

A blocked salivary gland?

After a quick look over by the dentist, it was determined that I was suffering from a simple mouth ulcer. And let me tell you, it hurt like the dickens.

When I was younger, I was terrified of the dentist. I had a lot of things go wrong with my baby teeth, and I associated the dentist with pain. As I've gotten older, however, I have learned to get things checked out before they become a bigger problem. My current dentist is very friendly, and I think he enjoys my sick sense of humor whenever I'm in the chair.

I knew that a lump in my mouth could be something bad, so I didn't waste any time getting to the office. The dental hygienist, however, could not find anything wrong with my mouth. When my dentist came in for a look, I was worried that he would think I was crazy. After some poking around, he found the sore spot. I almost jumped out of the chair when he pushed on it. He couldn't believe that something so tiny could give me so much pain. I was quickly diagnosed with a little mouth ulcer - very common.

Have you ever had one?

It's extremely likely that you have experienced one or more ulcers in your mouth over the years. They are usually caused by eating something sharp or crunchy. If these foods tear open the side of your cheek, a sore spot will form. Some people even bite their cheeks, causing rather large ulcers.

For a small one, it is usually treated with a numbing agent, such as Orajel. I was told that they usually take 10 to 14 days to fully heal. Larger ulcers can get infected, so it's always best to have those examined by your dentist.

It's been a few days, and I'm happy to report that my mouth is slowly healing. It is really quite amazing how quickly the inside of your mouth can repair itself.