Pregnancy Canker Sores Pregnancy Canker Sore Treatment

Summary: Pregnancy canker sores are common among expectant mothers, and they can cause discomfort and pain. These sores often appear on the mouth, tongue, or lips during pregnancy due to hormonal changes and a weakened immune system. In this article, we will discuss the causes, symptoms, and possible treatments for pregnancy canker sores to help expectant mothers alleviate their symptoms.

1. Causes of pregnancy canker sores

Canker sores occur in about 20% of the general population; however, pregnant women are more prone to developing them. Hormonal changes during pregnancy can weaken the immune system, making the body vulnerable to infections. Canker sores are not contagious, but they can be triggered by different factors such as:

  • Stress or anxiety
  • Dietary habits such as spicy or acidic foods
  • Bacteria or viruses
  • Injury or trauma
  • Weakened immune system

These factors can cause the development of pregnancy canker sores.

2. Symptoms of pregnancy canker sores

Pregnancy canker sores are typically small, ulcer-like white or yellow open sores that develop on the mouth, tongue, or lips and can last from a few days to weeks. They may cause pain or discomfort while eating, speaking, or brushing teeth. Some women experience multiple sores at once that form in clusters. The severity of canker sores varies; some may be mild and barely noticeable, while others can be large, painful, and take longer to heal.

Other symptoms may include:

  • A tingling or burning sensation before the sore appears
  • Inflammation or swelling around the sore
  • Fever, swollen glands, and general discomfort (in severe cases)

3. Home remedies for pregnancy canker sores

While canker sores may not be prevented, there are some home remedies to alleviate the symptoms and promote faster healing. These remedies include:

  • Rinsing the mouth with saltwater
  • Applying a moist teabag to the sore (it helps to reduce inflammation)
  • Avoiding acidic, spicy, and salty foods, which might increase inflammation
  • Applying natural honey directly to the sore (it has antibacterial properties that can help prevent infection)
  • Using mouthwash products that do not contain alcohol

4. Medical treatments for pregnancy canker sores

When home remedies do not relieve the pain or discomfort associated with pregnancy canker sores, medical treatments can help. These treatments may include:

  • Topical corticosteroids creams or gels can lessen inflammation and promote healing. They are applied directly to the sore and can provide relief within a few days.
  • Oral medications such as antibiotics or anesthetics (when the sores become infected or too painful) may be prescribed.
  • Antimicrobial mouth rinses or toothpaste can also be used to help prevent oral infections and ease pain associated with canker sores.
  • Laser therapy may be recommended for severe canker sores.

5. When to consult a doctor

In most cases, pregnancy canker sores disappear on their own within a few weeks; however, if they persist for more than two weeks, it is essential to seek medical attention. Consult a doctor if you experience:

  • Very large sores
  • Persistent high fever
  • Difficulty eating or drinking due to the pain
  • Swollen lymph nodes on the neck or chin
  • Excessive bleeding or pus around the sore
  • Difficulty swallowing or speaking

When you notice any of these symptoms, contact the doctor immediately. The earlier the treatment, the less severe the outcome.


Pregnancy canker sores are often an unpleasant side effect of pregnancy, but fortunately, they can be managed by simple home remedies. It is essential to maintain oral hygiene throughout the pregnancy to help prevent canker sores from forming. If the sores persist and become too painful or do not heal, consult a doctor for medical treatment and management. With proper care, pregnancy canker sores can be alleviated and maintained for a healthy pregnancy.

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