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Why does your child suffer the pain of recurring mouth ulcers?

Updated on May 12, 2015
dingyskipper profile image

Hi, my name is Carolyn and I have personal experience of this problem. I hope that you find this article helpful.

Possible Cause no 1, Sodium Lauryl sulphate

Does your child suffer from dreadful mouth ulcers?

Did you know it could be caused by toothpaste?

My family did not realise for years, my son suffered terrible pain, and nothing seemed to help. Then one day I saw a small comment in a magazine, a few lines that were to change his life!

It mentioned a fairly unknown allergy, to Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. This product is used to produce foam in many toothpastes, soaps and bath foams. Even my dentist had never heard of this allergy.

We decided it was worth a try to attempted to hunt down pastes without this chemical, it was harder than expected, but thanks to Weleda we managed, they do a large range of products.

The change was almost immediate, we were over the moon! Then we thought about the undiagnosed skin rash he kept getting, and right enough by changing bathing products that improved dramatically as well.

This has meant seaching out suitable products, and in many cases paying a bit more, but the effort is more than worthwhile!

Below are some more causes and some advice to help cut down the pain.

Mouth ulcer in the throat

The Uvula

The uvula is the dangly bit at the back of your throat, sometimes my son would get an ulcer on his that almost cut it in half.

The function of the uvula is not fully understood, but it is known to produce saliva that helps keep the throat moist, this would aid us when speaking for long periods of time.

Some people have theirs removed surgically and, according to what language they speak, they can have difficulty pronouncing some words

Pencil chewing, a problem

No 2. Damage to the mouth

Ulcers can be caused by damage to the mouth, maybe your child has a habit of chewing the inside of their lips or cheek.

Softer tooth brushes may help.

Try to stop any habits like chewing pencil tops and other hard or rough objects

Sharp teeth, badly fitted dentures and braces can also cause problems

No 3 Stress and anxiety

You may notice your childs ulcers appearing at stressful times such as starting a new school or at exam times. Even if your child is very young and you think they are happy they may not be.

Try to remember how you felt as a child about such things.

Stress can cause many physical problems


No 4. foods That can cause mouth ulcers

Certain foods can cause, and definitely irritate these painful sores.

The include all citrus, and acidic fruits such as pineapple and strawberry.

Tomatoes are another common problem maker, along with peanuts and even chocolate and maybe chewing gum.

The only way to find out if any of these are the problem is to eliminate them from the diet for a couple of weeks and see what happens.


No 5 Hormonal changes

Changes in hormonal system can cause all kinds of problems including mouth ulcers, so keep this in mind as your little girl turns into a young lady.

Hand foot and mouth disease, also causes sores on the hands and feet


No 6 medical conditions

There are medical conditions that also cause mouth ulcers such a vitamin B12 or iron deficiency.

These things can only be treated, and often only spotted by a Doctor, so do not hold back from visiting one just because it's only mouth ulcers.

Certain medications also cause this problem so check with your pharmacist

Treatment for mouth ulcers, canker sores

Ulcers should get better on their own within 2 weeks, if not visit a dentist or doctor for advice.

Things to avoid doing using hard toothbrushes, eating acidic foods and drinks, also eat foods that are soft to chew on.

Home remedies that may help include putting a sliver of ice on the ulcer, dabbing with honey occasionally and what my son found useful, eating yogurt, or swishing yogurt drinks around the mouth. The must have live bacterium in the such as yakult.

Rinsing the mouth with salt water is a good idea, but it is really quite painful, so not so good for a young child.

Numerous remedies can be obtained from the chemist, such as Bonjela, many are designed to help the immediate pain.

If all else fails the doctor is the only place you can go.

Hope this has been helpful to you'




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    • Bard of Ely profile image

      Steve Andrews 8 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      I am not surprised - SLS is a "nasty" that is contained in far too many products, which most people go on happily or not so happily buying! As you found out there is not much option without a long search. If you want to avoid fluoride too it makes it even harder!