Canker Sore and Cold Sore

Canker Sores and Cold Sores

When to Seek Medical Care for Canker Sores and Cold Sores

There is a distinct difference between canker sores and cold sores, the most prominent one being that a canker sore is inside the mouth and a cold sore is outside. They are both painful and can be quite annoying. However, they are also both typically minor and do not require the assessment of a medical worker. There are some times when it is advisable to see a doctor about a canker sore or a cold sore.

Dealing with Canker Sores

Canker sores are usually found inside the mouth on the gums or inside the cheeks although they can appear on any area of the mucous membranes in the mouth. They usually run their course in three or four days and no one knows exactly why they occur. There are ways to relieve the discomfort, but there is not a cure for canker sores. They do not typically require a visit to the doctor or dentist, but there are a few reasons to consult a medical or dental professional including:

  • If the canker sores disrupt your eating and make it difficult
  • If you experience canker sores frequently on a regular basis

Dealing with Cold Sores

Cold sores look like a little cluster of blisters and they usually appear outside the mouth around the edge of your lip. They are caused by a viral infection, herpes simplex virus. Cold sores are a very common occurrence and there is no cure for them. There are some medications that might relieve the pain. They do not require an examination by a medical professional. However, there are some symptoms that would necessitate a visit to the doctor including:

  • If the cold sores become infected
  • If cold sores do not go away after 2 weeks
  • If you start running a fever over 100 degrees
  • You have them around the eye and the eye gets irritated