When talking about oral hygiene, you probably think about brushing and flossing, but what about your mouth hygiene? We use our mouths to communicate, breathe and eat, so it’s paramount to take good care of them! Being an organ just like any other, your mouth can be damaged or hurt in many ways. If you at any point start having sores and inflammation inside of your mouth, you might be experiencing the symptoms of stomatitis. Never heard of it? Stay with us and read through to learn about stomatitis.
Types of Stomatitis
Stomatitis can really happen to anyone, so don’t be afraid, it’s not something you can’t treat. What causes stomatitis? The reasons are various, however, you should know that there are three types of stomatitis – herpes stomatitis, aphthous stomatitis, and denture stomatitis. They might sound scary, but they are actually very common and treatable, so don’t worry.
Herpes stomatitis, also known as cold sores, is caused by the Herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1). Although it doesn’t show any symptoms, the virus is contagious and transmitted through saliva. Once it’s contracted, which can happen between the ages of 6 months and 5, the virus stays in your body your whole life, but it activates only when your immune system is down. Make sure to stay healthy!
When you have a herpes stomatitis outbreak, you might experience drooling, fever and visible herpes on your mouth. The outbreaks usually aren’t too serious, so drinking a lot of water, taking good care of your hygiene and taking pain relievers are the way to go. This usually goes away after a week or two.
Canker sores or aphthous stomatitis is even more common than the herpes stomatitis. They are white and round mouth sores that develop one or ten at a time. How do you get stomatitis, especially the aphthous one? Well, scientists say that they run in families, but aren’t contagious. They develop due to a deficiency in the person’s immune system but are not very serious.
Things such as acidic food, stress, injuries or hormonal imbalance can all cause canker sores. They can’t be prevented or treated, but the symptoms such as tingling and burning sensation can be treated. Small ones usually won’t cause you much trouble and will go away on their own, but the big ones might be problematic and even leave a scar, so take good care. Applying pain-relieving gels or even steroid medications might help in more severe cases.
Denture stomatitis or thrush usually affects people who wear dentures, suffer from diabetes, consume oral steroids or simply don’t take care of their oral hygiene. If you noticed red sores under your dentures or on the corner of your mouth, you might have fallen victim to thrush.
When naturally occurring fungus in the mouth, candida, starts overgrowing, thrush appears. This usually means you haven’t been taking good care of your mouth and teeth, but it’s not late to start now! Regular brushing and rinsing, soaking the dentures and washing them after meals are only some of the things you should be doing to stop thrush from worsening. If you, however, feel that you need professional stomatitis treatments, consulting a specialist like Dr. Angela Berkovich might be a good thing to do.
Just like with any other oral problem, stomatitis requires taking good care of your oral hygiene. Regardless of the type you are suffering from, pay attention to what you eat, brush and floss every day, clean your dentures and use pain relievers if you find it necessary. Stomatitis can be resolved with homemade remedies, but don’t hesitate to consult a dentist if you think you should.