5 Best Mouthwash for Ulcers 2024 (Dentist Recommended)
Dentist Tested & Reviewed
Matt Hannan, DDS
Updated: January 11, 2024
Mouth ulcers can be a real pain, literally and metaphorically. They interfere with your ability to eat, drink, and even talk comfortably.
When dealing with this pesky oral issue, choosing the right mouthwash can make a world of difference.
As an experienced dentist with years of experience, I’ve tested and evaluated 250+ dental products. I strive to find the best products for achieving excellent oral hygiene, so let’s take a closer look at the Best Mouthwash for Ulcers from a dentist’s perspective.
- Best Overall: Colgate Peroxyl Mouthwash
- Best All-Natural: Hello Peace Out Plaque Mouthwash
- Best Value: TheraBreath Fresh Breath Oral Rinse
- Best Sensitivity: CloSYS Ultra Sensitive Mouthwash
- Best Pain Relief: Orajel Antiseptic Mouth Sore Rinse
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Understanding Mouth Ulcers
Mouth ulcers, commonly known as canker sores, are small, painful lesions that form on the soft tissues inside your mouth, or at the base of your gums.
Unlike cold sores, they are not contagious but can be incredibly annoying and painful. They can appear as a single sore or multiple sores clustered together.
Although the exact cause of mouth ulcers is still not fully understood, several factors can trigger their occurrence.
Stress, certain foods, hormonal changes, and even minor trauma to the mouth from dental work or accidental biting can set them off.
It’s crucial to differentiate between occasional mouth ulcers and recurring ones.
Occasional mouth ulcers are usually harmless and resolve on their own within a week or two.
However, if you experience frequent mouth ulcers, it may be an indication of an underlying health condition that requires attention from a dental or medical professional.
- Common Locations: Inside the lips, cheeks, and on the floor of the mouth.
- Appearance: Round or oval with a white or yellowish center and a red border.
- Common Triggers: Acidic foods, spicy foods, stress, hormonal changes.
- Less Common Triggers: Underlying medical conditions, certain medications.
- Occasional Ulcers: Typically heal within 1-2 weeks without treatment.
- Recurring Ulcers: May require medical attention to rule out other health issues.
- Pain: Often the first symptom, pain can vary from mild to severe.
- Burning Sensation: A stinging or burning feeling before the ulcer appears.
- White or Yellow Center: The ulcer often has a white or yellowish core.
- Red Border: A noticeable red boundary usually surrounds the ulcer.
- Swelling: Adjacent areas may show slight swelling or inflammation.
- Difficulty Eating or Speaking: Pain or discomfort while eating, drinking, or talking.
Selecting the Right Mouthwash
Mouthwash is more than just a breath freshener; it plays an essential role in oral health. For those suffering from mouth ulcers, an appropriate mouthwash can serve as a relief-giving liquid that can both alleviate symptoms and aid in faster healing.
The antiseptic properties found in many mouthwashes can kill bacteria that might otherwise infect the ulcer.
Moreover, mouthwashes often contain ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile, and other soothing compounds that can help reduce inflammation and pain.
- Antiseptic Properties: Helps kill bacteria and prevent infection.
- Soothing Ingredients: Reduces inflammation and provides relief from pain.
- Oral Hygiene: Assists in keeping the mouth clean, which is crucial for ulcer healing.
- pH Balance: Some mouthwashes help maintain a balanced pH, promoting a healthier oral environment.
Moreover, look for mouthwashes that contain soothing ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile, or hydrogen peroxide, which can expedite the healing process.
- Alcohol-Free: Alcohol can dry out the mouth and worsen ulcers.
- Soothing Ingredients: Aloe vera, chamomile, and hydrogen peroxide are good choices.
- pH Balanced: Helps maintain an optimal oral environment for healing.
- Dentist-Recommended: Always a good indicator of efficacy and safety.
According to research, oral ulceration is the most common ulcerative condition in humans, affecting up to 25% of young adults and a higher proportion of children.
Top 5 Best Mouthwash for Ulcers
Now that you understand what mouth ulcers are and the vital role mouthwash can play in your treatment let’s dive into the top 5 dentist-recommended mouthwashes to help you find relief and expedite healing.
These selections meet the criteria for effective ulcer treatment, from antiseptic properties to soothing ingredients.
1. Colgate Peroxyl Mouthwash (Best Overall)
Colgate seeks to develop products that promote healthy smiles.
They’ve been in the oral health care industry for over 145 years and offer various oral care products. Sustainability is also important to them as they recently created a first-of-its-kind recyclable toothpaste tube.
In addition, they strive to be an accessible company that offers many educational resources to the public and dental professionals. Peroxyl Mouth Sore Rinse is formulated with 1.5% hydrogen peroxide to cleanse and promote the healing of minor oral wounds.
Colgate Peroxyl Mouth Sore Rinse earns its spot as the best overall choice for several compelling reasons.
Firstly, it features a hydrogen peroxide formulation, renowned for its antiseptic properties, which actively kills bacteria and helps prevent infections.
Secondly, the product is alcohol-free, eliminating the risk of drying out your mouth and exacerbating your ulcers.
It also contains oxygenating action that helps to remove oral debris, fostering a cleaner environment for your mouth ulcers to heal.
Finally, its mild mint flavor leaves your mouth feeling refreshed without causing any irritation, making it a comfortable and effective solution for daily use.
2. Hello Peace Out Plaque Mouthwash (Best All-Natural)
Say hello to naturally healthy antigingivitis mouthwash.
Thoughtfully formulated with aloe vera to promote healthy gums, this rinse contains coconut oil to moisturize, mint to freshen and natural sweeteners to rock your taste buds. And it prevents plaque and gingivitis, and freshens breath.
Hello contains no alcohol, no artificial sweeteners, no artificial flavors, no dyes and no SLS sulfates. As if that weren't enough magic for one bottle, hello is also vegan, never tested on animals.
For those who prioritize natural ingredients, Hello’s Peace Out Plaque Antigingivitis Mouthwash is an excellent choice.
It stands out for its formulation that uses tea tree oil and coconut oil—both known for their antimicrobial and soothing properties.
Free from alcohol, artificial sweeteners, and preservatives, this mouthwash ensures you’re not introducing any harsh or synthetic ingredients into your oral care routine.
Additionally, the product is vegan and cruelty-free, aligning with ethical considerations.
Its mild yet effective formulation provides relief from mouth ulcers while also catering to those who are looking for a more natural approach to oral care.
3. TheraBreath Fresh Breath Oral Rinse (Best Value)
Dr. Harold Katz created TheraBreath to help his daughter overcome her struggle with bad breath.
Since 1994 they’ve been creating oral care products that treat halitosis, gum disease, tooth decay, stained teeth, immune support, tooth sensitivity, and dry mouth. The original TheraBreath formulation attacks odor-causing bacteria rather than masking it with heavy flavors or powerful odors.
TheraBreath is one of the five largest oral care companies and the largest privately-held manufacturer. TheraBreath Oral Rinse stimulates saliva flow and circulates antibacterial, oxygen-rich bacteria throughout your mouth.
For those seeking an effective yet budget-friendly option, TheraBreath Fresh Breath Dentist-Formulated Oral Rinse is hard to beat.
Created by a dentist with extensive clinical research backing, it’s specifically designed to tackle a range of oral health issues, including the troublesome mouth ulcers.
Its oxygenating agent eliminates bacteria in a gentle way, meaning it’s alcohol-free and less likely to irritate sensitive mouths.
The generous 16-ounce bottles, often available in multi-packs, translate to more bang for your buck, providing both effective treatment and longevity.
On top of addressing mouth ulcers, it also combats bad breath and is mild enough for daily use.
This combination of effectiveness, multi-purpose utility, and reasonable pricing make it an excellent value choice.
4. CloSYS Ultra Sensitive Mouthwash (Best Sensitivity)
CloSYS Mouthwashes you can protect your mouth from harmful bad breath germs and freshen your breath without the painful burn.
CloSYS is one of the first mouthwashes to receive the American Dental Association seal for reducing bad breath. This gentle but powerful mouthwash is perfect for all ages because its patented formula is pH-balanced and so gentle you’ll actually use it longer for better results.
A 30-second rinse in the morning and evening after each brushing is easy, and all it takes to get great results. CloSYS Ultra Sensitive Mouthwash comes unflavored so it's like water and even tastes like water.
For those struggling with mouth ulcers along with sensitivity issues, CloSYS Ultra Sensitive Mouthwash is the ideal pick.
Specially designed for sensitive mouths, this product is free from alcohol, sulfates, and other common irritants.
Its pH-balanced formula helps maintain a natural oral environment, which is crucial for those dealing with sensitivity.
The mouthwash also has a unique unflavored option, allowing you to avoid the often irritating minty or medicinal tastes found in other products.
Coupled with its effectiveness in killing bacteria and reducing plaque, CloSYS offers a gentle yet powerful option that addresses both ulcers and sensitivity without causing discomfort.
5. Orajel Antiseptic Mouth Sore Rinse (Best Pain Relief)
Orajel Antiseptic Mouth Sore Rinse is specifically formulated to kill bacteria and promote healing of canker sores, gum irritation, cheek bites, and denture irritation.
The unique formula offers powerful cleansing in an effervescent, mint-flavored rinse.
If immediate pain relief is your primary concern, Orajel Antiseptic Rinse for Mouth Sores is the best option to consider. This rinse is specially formulated with antiseptic properties to kill bacteria and an analgesic to relieve pain.
It includes benzocaine, a topical anesthetic that provides fast-acting pain relief, targeting mouth ulcers specifically.
The antiseptic qualities also help to prevent secondary infections, making it a comprehensive solution for both pain relief and oral health.
With its dual-action formula, it not only alleviates pain but also helps in speeding up the healing process.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Mouth ulcers can be caused by a variety of factors including physical trauma (e.g., accidental biting, burns from hot food), certain medications, nutritional deficiencies (e.g., lack of vitamin B12, iron), hormonal changes, and underlying medical conditions (e.g., Celiac disease, Crohn’s disease). Stress and certain foods like citrus fruits can also trigger or worsen mouth ulcers.
Some people may experience a burning sensation, dryness, or slight irritation when using certain types of mouthwash, especially those containing alcohol. If you have a sensitivity to certain ingredients or if the mouthwash worsens your symptoms, it’s advisable to stop using it and consult a healthcare provider. Always read the label and follow the directions for use.
My Experience & Expertise
As a dentist, I understand how distressing and uncomfortable mouth ulcers can be.
While they are generally not a cause for significant concern, they can hinder your daily activities and affect your quality of life. Mouthwashes can play a pivotal role in managing these symptoms, alongside a well-balanced oral hygiene routine.
Whether you’re looking for a product that offers the best value, quick pain relief, or something suitable for sensitive mouths, there are various options available that can cater to your specific needs.
Need a second opinion? We can help! Learn more. Knowledge is power when cultivating healthy dental habits. The more informed you are, the better positioned you’ll be to prevent avoidable and potentially costly dental procedures for you and your family. Watch for future blog posts, where we’ll continue sharing important information, product reviews and practical advice!
About the Author
Dr. Matthew Hannan, also known as “Dr. Advocate,” is a board-certified dentist on a mission to provide accurate dental patient education. He attended Baylor University before completing dental school at UT Health San Antonio School of Dentistry. He now lives in Arizona with his beautiful wife and 4 kids. Dr. Hannan believes everyone should access easy-to-read dental resources with relevant, up-to-date dental research and insight to improve their oral health.
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