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Dental and Oral Health Center

Ulcers in My Mouth



For aslong as I can remember I have had ulcers appear in my mouth after ive eaten some specific foods such as tomatoes, pineapple, melon, beetroot, bannanas etc. I was wondering whats wrong with me. Kind regards


You are probably describing what is referred to as “Aphthous Ulceration” or “Recurrent Aphthous Stomatitis (RAS)”.

Aphthous means burning and describes the painful sensation associated with these oral lesions. The etiology or cause is highly debatable, and can be triggered by a multitude of agents, as you already know.

Twenty five years ago a professor of mine at OSU described the step by step development of these lesions as a ”localized immunologic screw-up”, and he was pretty accurate.

We currently believe that the ulceration is a T cell mediated response to noxious stimuli (or at least your body has determined that the stimuli are noxious). Stress  and seasonal exposures can also precipitate the ulcers to occur (Early summer, and fall are prime times and also in late August and September in Ohio, with corn on the cob, fresh tomatoes, and dairy products like ice cream).

RAS has also been associated with a family linkage (genetic basis for the disease).

Clinically, they can present as Minor, major, and herptiform aphthae, and size, number and frequency of occurrence can be variable.

Treatment is as diverse as the causes, and ranges from palliative, and removal of the noxious agents, to steroid therapy, cyclosporine etc. The treatment required is generally dictated by the severity of symptoms and clinical presentation.

I hope this helps and if you are having problems with these lesions. I strongly suggest that you see your dentist or primary care physician. Again, these are very common and can be very problematic and painful. Thank you for visiting NetWellness.

Related Resources:

Canker sores
Recurrent Aphthous Ulcerations ("Canker Sores")

For more information:

Go to the Dental and Oral Health Center health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Richard J Jurevic, DDS, PhD Richard J Jurevic, DDS, PhD
Formerly, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences
School of Dental Medicine
Case Western Reserve University