10 Science-Backed Home Remedies for Canker Sores

Updated on February 24th, 2020
Home Remedies for Canker Sores

Canker sores are a widespread problem. It is difficult to talk or eat if you have canker sores. There are a lot of medicines to treat a canker sore, but sometimes we need to rely on home remedies for canker sores to get immediate relief. Why? Most of these remedies are based on organic ingredients, so side effects are lesser than what artificial or chemical treatments could expose you to.

But before we start with the home remedies canker sores in the mouth, let’s check some bizarre facts:

  • Minor Aphthous Stomatitis- This is the most common form of lesions, which more than 80% of canker sore victims suffering from it.
  • Canker sores could signal you before erupting on the surface of your skin. Burning, and tingling are some of the signs you can watch out for!

Home Remedies for Canker Sores

1. Alum Powder

Alum powder is potassium aluminum sulfate. This powder contains an astringent compound which helps to shrink the tissues and dry out the sores inside your mouth.

  1. Make a mix of alum powder and water.
  2. Apply this paste on the canker sore.
  3. Leave this paste for 1 minute.
  4. Now rinse your mouth thoroughly.
  5. Repeat this method until the canker sore disappears.

Use small amounts of the powder and one or two drops of water to make the paste.

2. Yogurt


In a few cases, a bacteria known as H. pylori. Could result in Canker Sore(1). Probiotics have the capacity to eradicate the effect and growth of this bacteria. So if your canker sore is caused because of inflammatory bowel disease or this bacteria, then organic probiotics such as yogurt can help you.

There is no specific predefined way to have yogurt. Yogurts make for a tasty and a great dessert. So enjoy it in the form you wish.

You can have one cup of yogurt every day.

[Also Read: Health Benefits of Yogurt ]

3. Baking Soda

baking soda

Baking soda for canker sore is very beneficial because baking soda(2) can reestablish pH balance and decrease inflammation. This reduced inflammation can heal canker sores.

  1. Dilute one teaspoon of baking soda in half a cup of water.
  2. Twirl this mixture in your mouth. Continue swirling it for 15 to 30 seconds. After that, spit it out.
  3. Do it frequently in a day.

Baking soda is not harmful, but the taste is very salty and strong. So using it in a small amount is always a good idea.

home remedies for canker sores

[Also Read: Baking Soda: Health Benefits & Uses]

4. Saltwater

Saltwater is one of the most common home remedies for canker sore. Gargling with salt water when you are suffering from a canker sore is a bit painful process though. The saltwater may cause a burning sensation. But the process helps to dry out the sores very effectively.

  • Add one tablespoon of salt in half a cup of Luke warm water.
  • Gargle the mixture for 30 seconds and spit it out.
  • Repeat the process frequently as needed.

There is no specific quantity. Saltwater does not have any side effect, so use it as per your comfort.

5. Honey

Honey is acknowledged for its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial capabilities. Honey can reduce canker sore size, pain, and redness. Most of the available kinds of honey are processed, which actually lack the nutrients. If it is possible, then try to get the unfiltered or organic honey.

Apply honey directly on the canker sore. It is one of the most popular home remedies for canker sores. You can use it several times a day.

Only one drop of honey is enough for applying on the canker sore.

15 Warning Signs That You’re Unhealthy

Our bodies have a way of telling us if something’s going wrong. Even when the problem seems to be neurological, the human body will show us symptoms in a physical form.

[Also Read: Amazing Benefits of Honey ]

6. Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is also one of the mentionable home remedies for canker sores on the tongue. It cleans the sore and reduces bacteria growth. It is beneficial to treat canker sores. The anti-bacterial property of Hydrogen Peroxide accelerates the healing.

  1. Add Hydrogen peroxide to water to a ratio of 50:50.
  2. Take a cotton ball, dip it in the mixture, and dab it on the canker sores.
  3. Keep it in the mouth for a minute and then spit it out.
  4. Repeat the method a few times every day.

Take the quantity as described above. You can use the solution frequently until you get rid of the canker sores.

7. Coconut Oil

Use Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is rich in antimicrobial properties. These antimicrobial properties can stop the bacteria’s from causing canker sore and prevents their expansion. Coconut oil is also an organic anti-inflammation, which means you can expect immediate pain relief after applying it.

You can smear coconut oil directly on your sores.

You can try it every day and keep repeating it until the sores are gone.

[Also Read: Benefits of Coconut Oil for Cold Sores]

8. Echinacea

Echinacea has a unique power to heal wounds and to boost your immunity. These two powers make it a very effective home remedy for canker sore. Echinacea prevents canker sores from forming.

  1. Take liquid Echinacea and warm water in a 1:1 ratio. Mix well.
  2. Swish the rinse for at least 2 minutes.
  3. Now spit it out.

You can swish the solution for three-time every day. Consuming Echinacea tea is also a good idea. In that case, one cup of tea is enough.

9. Chamomile

chamomile benefits

Home remedies for canker sores can never be complete without mentioning about chamomile. Chamomile is a natural wound-healer and also known for relieving pain. German chamomile comprises both antiseptic and anti-inflammatory compounds. These compounds are known as levomenol and azulene.

  1. Keep a damp chamomile tea bag on your canker sore. Leave it there for a few minutes.
  2. Apart from this simple process, you can try another way to get some relief. Rinse your mouth with warm and freshly made chamomile tea.

You can repeat both these methods three to four times every day unless your sores are gone.

10. Milk of Magnesia

Milk of Magnesia Liquid

Milk of magnesia is high in magnesium hydroxide. It’s a laxative and an effective acid neutralizer. When used orally, it can balance the pH level in your mouth, which can stop the sore from growing. Milk of Magnesia creates a layer which eases the irritation and pain.

  1. Take a tiny amount of milk of magnesia and apply it on the sore.
  2. Leave it for a few seconds and then rinse it thoroughly.
  3. Try to repeat the method several times a day.

Only a small amount will be enough for every time you use.

Canker sores can feel like a tiny thing, and you might want to ignore them. However, if it starts growing, it could take months to recover. The worst part about canker sores is it can turn into a severe ulcer or even cancer. Ignorance is not bliss, at least not when it pertains to the onset of ailment like a canker sore. So, here we unraveled the home remedies for canker sores. Start using them right away and get rid of the painful sores in your mouth.

[Also Read: Essential Oils for Treating Canker Sores]


1. What are the causes of canker sores?

Apart from injured tissue, particular foods like citrus fruits, tomatoes, pineapple, and strawberries, etc. can cause canker sores. The reason may differ from person to person; Dental accessories like braces can also be a potential cause. If the pH balance is not right, it can generate canker sores.

2. What are the preventions for canker sores?

To prevent canker sores, you can try a few ways.  First of all, avoid those foods which irritate your mouth (acidic fruits, spices, or hot meals). Always try to maintain the basic oral hygiene and use soft brushes.

3. What are the other treatment options for canker sores?

Most of the time, doctors recommend medicated antibacterial mouthwashes and ointments. But in a few cases, oral medicines are also administered.

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