There are many types of mouth sores which occur in children. They generally affect the tongue and inner surface of the cheeks. Oral changes are in a form of shallow ulcers with a red border. These oral changes may have yellow or white center. Even though there is a chance that a child develops more than one type of mouth sores in majority of cases the oral cavity is affected only with one particular type of sores. Some mouth sores are very painful and a child simply refuses to eat and drink. On the other hand, mouth sore may only look unsightly and cause no other additional symptom.
All mouth sores in children can be classified into cancer sores, cold sores, leukoplakia sores and candidiasis sores.
Canker Sores in Children
Canker sores in children develop as a consequence of emotional stress, certain deficiencies (vitamin B12, iron or folic acid), food allergy, accidental biting of the inner surface of the lips and cheeks, hot food or drinks, orthodontic brackets and bands, friction caused by broken teeth and family history of cancer sores.
Healing of these oral lesions can be accelerated with soft bland foods, acidophilus containing yoghurt, cold fluids, maintaining proper oral hygiene and use of toothpaste free from sodium lauryl sulfate. Spicy foods, citrus fruit and acidic food products should be avoided.
Cold Sores in Children
Cold sores in children develop due to infection caused by HSV-1 and HVS-2. The virus is transmitted with kissing infected people and once the infections has occured it can easily reoccur especially if a child is under stress, exposed to sun or his/ her immune system is weakened.
Children suffering from cold sores are supposed to have a balanced diet which contain foods rich in lysine. Furthermore, the treatment consists of moisturizers that are applied onto the affected area, balms that are applied directly onto the sores and some topical medications that are able to numb the affected area.
Leukoplakia Sores in Children
Leukoplakia develops due to excessive cell growth and is usually associated with irritation caused by broken teeth and chewing of the cheeks. The condition is more frequent in adults.
Leukoplakia requires elimination of the causing irritants and a proper diet. These oral lesions may require surgical removal as well.
Candidiasis Sores in Children
Oral candidiasis is common in children, particularly in babies. It develops as a consequence of weakened immune system. It is treated with dietary changes and maintaining impeccable oral hygiene. There are also oral gels and topical preparations that can be used in case of candidiasis sores in children.