Cankersore in a 4 Year Old What Can I Do

Updated on June 14, 2011
S.K. asks from Castle Rock, CO
15 answers

My daughter went to the dentist and they took x-rays of her mouth. The xray thing cut her mouth right where the cheek meets the bottom of the gums pretty good. It looks like a 3/4 inch long cankersore and I know those are extremely painful. She doesnt want to eat and is always crying that it hurts. I tried some of that cankersore medicine and within an hour she was saying her feet felt tickly so now im scared to give her anymore of that. we have done sea salt rinses what else can i put on there to at least numb it or help it heal faster?

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So What Happened?

Get Started Causes
By Mayo Clinic staff

The precise cause of canker sores remains unclear, though researchers suspect that a combination of several factors contributes to outbreaks, even in a single individual. These factors include:

A minor injury to your mouth from dental work, overzealous brushing, sports mishaps, spicy or acidic foods, or an accidental cheek bite

So yes it turned into a canker thanks!

Featured Answers


answers from Seattle on

I get cancker sores bad sometimes, and had one a few days ago. I put Alum on mine and it numbs the pain and dries it out. Its a kitchen pickling salt but its used for cancker sores too.

Hope it works for you too!

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answers from Dallas on

I got them really bad when I was growing up and tried everything.

A couple years ago, I got a bad one during a dental procedure. The dentist gave me an Rx kindof like Orabase but stronger. It is a gritty paste, put it on the sore at bedtime, put a little piece of paper towel or gauze on it and go to bed.. no more water, etc for the night.

It seemed like it worked overnight. I use this whenever I have a canker sore now.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Medford on

just put baking soda on it. I know it sounds crazy, BUT my dad and I both get canker sores in our mouths because of an allergy, it works. Its taste bad, but it works. Just put a little on your finger and apply it to the sore.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

I get cancker sores bad sometimes, and had one a few days ago. I put Alum on mine and it numbs the pain and dries it out. Its a kitchen pickling salt but its used for cancker sores too.

Hope it works for you too!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

They are caused by a virus. The best thing to do to prevent them is to give her a good mulitvitamin. L-Lysine is the specific vitamin/mineral that helps prevent them. I battled them my entire life before I get one I run a fever (I call them fever blisters and canker sores) I have found if I take a fever/pain reducer such as tylenol it helps them a lot. Mine are usually on the lips but I have had them in my mouth before too. Ice also helps them once they start. Mine finally stopped when I started using a product from Arbonne called lip service which they do not have at this time :( whatever was in the supplements made mine go away and I have complained and hope they will bring them back soon in the mean time I take my daily Essentials from Arbonne and so far I haven't got one YAY. Good Luck I hope you find something to help your daughter those are so painful.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Sacramento on

uh, how does a cut cause canker? it doesnt. she has a cut, not a canker sore. call the dentist that cut her mouth and ask what they recommend. if they dont have a good solution, call a pharmacist and ask them.

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answers from Lansing on

Are you talking about a canker sore or a cold sore? Those are 2 totally different things.

Canker sores can be caused by diet. If she is eating a lot of acidy fruits or veggies, it can cause them. They also can be caused from other things (allergies, stress, smoking, etc (and I know your 4yr old isn't smoking, but just throwing it out there for adults too)). They are caused by bacteria.

Cold sores are a virus (herpes). Which would need an antiviral medicine. Kids get them from other people kissing them. Or a person who has HSV1 touching their face in someway. It's very contagious.

I just thought I would ask because ppl get them 2 mixed up all the time and think they are the same, but they aren't.

Here is a site that lists home remedies to help relieve them, it also lists what can cause them:



answers from Denver on

A couple things. Go to Vitamin Cottage (right across the street from Target off of Founder's pkwy) and get some olive leaf extract to put directly on it. Lysine would also help. Also, get her toothpaste that is SLS free (sodium lauryl sulfate--it's been shown to increase likelihood of canker sores and is in most toothpastes). Tom's of Maine makes one, and there's a german company that makes one--pink bottle (that's the one we use on our kids).
Happy Healing!



answers from Boise on

Growing up my parents always used on me camphorphanic (sp) It usually comes in a green bottle. It heals and numbs the sore spot up quickly so that it is easy to eat and the sores get healed up a lot. I haven't had to deal with that with my kids yet, but if I do I will use the same.


answers from St. Louis on

Regardless of what you do they will last 3 to 5 days. The best thing I have found is the salt water to keep the pain down and heal them quickly.


answers from Los Angeles on

I second the L-Lysine supplements (check w/ your pediatrician) and a baking soda poultice applied topically.


answers from Great Falls on

Have her do warm salt water rinses about 3-4 times a day. Have her swish it around in there really good for a minute at least. Other than that theres not much you can do to help it heal faster, you just have to let it do its thing. but the salt water rinses will make it go away faster. If it is painful or bothersome for her, try putting a little ora-gel (sp?) on it and use it as directed. The "tickly" feel is the stuff working! Tell her that! she may just think its a really weird feeling and not be used to something like that, but its actually numbing the area. I think she would rather have a tickly feeling than a painful feeling. Good Luck! im sorry that happened. I can tell you as a dental assistant myself, its soooo sooo hard to take xrays on a child :( The sensors are too big and are made for adult mouths and unforunately in order to get a good pic of the roots, it sometimes can hurt or cut them :( I hate it...

I just read the other posts and i think everyones a little confused. Yes there is a difference between a cankersore and a cold sore. One is caused by a viral infection. I dont think its either one, but more of just a cut from the sensor or film and it turned into a sore. not a "cankersore" and not a "cold sore" (caused by the herpes virus). The cut turns into a sore becuase of the body's healing process (inflammation, etc) and because your mouth has about a bijillion different types or bacteria in there! Even if brush you really good, and floss (even though i know no one really does! LoL) and just in general take really good care of yourself, eating a good diet and excercise. There is still a ton of bacteria! and if you get a cut of some sort, it gets infected and inflamed and turns itself into a sore. Its actually a good thing, although painful, it means it is healing!


answers from Seattle on

If you can get anything with clove oil in it, it will give about 30 minutes of numbing action.



answers from Los Angeles on

my poor toddler had canker sores ALL over his mouth a few months back due to hand foot mouth disease. my pediatrician recommended the following to help relieve the pain:

- 50/50 mixture of Maalox and Benadryl--for older children they can swish and spit a dose of 1 teaspoon(5 ml) Maalox + 1 teaspoon Benadryl every 3 hours

- for younger children(over 1 year) they can swish and swallow a dose of ½ teaspoon Maalox + ½ teaspoon Benadryl every 3 hours

My son actually didn't know how to spit at the piont but the dr said it was fine if I gave him the younger children dose. We only did it once b/c my son HATED it but at 4 years old, you can explain why she should do it. I heard it really works so maybe your daughter will go along with it.


answers from Jacksonville on

I would give her tylenol and also try oragel for direct relief. Give the tylenol about 30min before meals so that she can have pain free meals.


answers from Dallas on

I used to get these ALL the time when I was little. My grandmother swore by tea bags. She used to say that placing a tea bag on the canker sore would 'draw out the cold'. lol! Whatever that means... I have no idea if it works and I'm inclined to believe that it doesn't, but now I do the same for my daughter and it does seem to make her feel better. She takes after me, and gets them pretty often, and she always reaches for a tea bag.

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