Cancer Sores and Stress
Medical Author: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Viewer Question: Is there a connection between stress and canker sores? What can I do to get rid of them and prevent future outbreaks?
Doctor's Response: Canker sores (also called aphthous ulcers) are shallow, red or white sores that develop anywhere inside the mouth. It is not known exactly why these sores develop, but stress does seem to precipitate canker sores in many people.
Canker sores go away on their own without any treatment; however, doctors often recommend pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen if the sores cause significant pain. There are other medications which can be applied directly to the sore to help prevent the sores from becoming further irritated and to help control pain. Many of these are the same type of medications used for teething pain in young children and babies. Examples include Anbesol, Oragel,...