How To Use Honey To Heal Canker Sores?

Honey is not only tasty, but its therapeutic properties can help you heal mouth infections.

Medically reviewed by Dr. SabaDr. Saba, BHMS, MD
By Kushneet KukrejaKushneet Kukreja  • 

While the exact cause of canker sores is unknown, a straightforward remedy for these unsightly and often painful sores is honey! Yes, you can use honey to heal canker sores. Honey has many therapeutic properties and has been used widely in traditional medicine to remedy various ailments. So it is not surprising that this kitchen staple can also work its magic on canker sores.

Stress, a weakened immune system, or even repeated lip-biting may be a reason for the development of canker sores. Regardless, you can use honey to heal it. Read on to know in detail about the right way to use honey for healing these sores. Also, find more insight into what a canker sore is and why it develops.

What Is A Canker Sore?

The scientific name of canker sore is Apthous stomatitis. In plain English, canker sore is a painful spot inside your mouth. A canker sore is a mouth ulcer. They start small but grow into large and extremely painful patches.

Why Honey In Canker Sores?

Since time immemorial, honey is known to have healing qualities (1). If your skin suffers from mild burns, applying honey on the affected area reduces the pain in no less than 10 minutes. When it comes to relieving you of mouth ulcers, honey works well because of its anti-inflammatory properties.

It is said that honey also has antibacterial qualities that help in the suppression of canker sores in your mouth. Honey also helps in the growth of tissues which play a vital role in the healing process of the wounds.

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Always use unprocessed or Manuka honey. It is superior to regular honey in all aspects and has more therapeutic benefits.

Study On Honey As A Canker Sore Healer

A couple of years ago, researchers conducted a study on the efficacy of honey for healing canker sores. They divided a batch of 94 people who had canker sores into three groups. To the first group of people, researchers gave commercial honey as a medicine to relieve mouth ulcers. To the second group, they gave an oral cream. The last and the third group got a medicinal paste to cure mouth ulcer.

Each one had to use their medicine three times a day.

Interestingly, those who used honey were pleasantly surprised to note the ulcer being healed. The healing signs were visible in just four days. The other two groups didn’t report any progress. Their wounds didn’t seem to heal even a bit.

It was then that the healing properties of honey in the case of canker sores were made clear.

How To Use Honey To Heal Canker Sores

Apply organic and raw honey to the sore and leave it on. Repeat the process two to three times a day. Ensure that you also apply raw honey to the sore before bed. Applying honey at night works more effectively because you don’t disturb the medicine by eating or drinking something.

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Alternatively, you can apply a blend of organic honey and coconut oil or aloe vera. Place a cotton ball on the sore to prevent the remedy from mixing with saliva.

Foods You Should Avoid Eating When You Have Canker Sores

It is suggested that you avoid consuming acidic food. It may slow down the healing process of the sores.

Canker sores are a kind of mouth ulcer that may progress from a small spot to large patches and can be caused due to weakened immunity, stress, or lip biting. These sores can be extremely painful and make daily tasks like eating and talking quite challenging. For a natural remedy, you can use honey to heal canker sores. Honey has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that aid to soothe the sores and facilitate their healing. In addition, honey supports the growth of new tissue and hence can speed up recovery. However, if the pain persists even after using honey for a few days, seek medical attention.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the white stuff in a canker sore?

The white substance you see in a canker sore is made up of bacteria, white blood cells, and debris from dead tissue.

How long does it take for a canker sore to heal?

The majority of canker sores fade away on their own within a few days to a week. Consult a doctor if the canker sore is painful and especially large or if it persists for more than two weeks.

Can a doctor do anything for a canker sore?

Yes. A doctor may recommend a topical medicine, such as a gel or a cream, or a specific mouthwash to help heal the canker sore.

Is canker sore contagious?

No, canker sores are not contagious.

Can you put Manuka honey on mouth ulcers?

Yes, you can apply Manuka honey on mouth ulcers.

Key Takeaways

  • Canker sores are a type of extremely painful mouth ulcer that may be caused by weakened immunity, stress, or lip biting.
  • Honey has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial qualities that may help in healing and reducing pain caused by canker sores in your mouth.
  • Applying organic and raw honey to the sore two to three times a day and before you go to bed may help heal them.
  • You should avoid consuming acidic foods as they may slow down the healing process of the sores.
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