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Aphthasol® is a prescription topical medication most commonly used to treat canker sores, painful open lesions that develop inside the mouth. The drug helps alleviate pain and inflammation and shorten healing time. When Aphthasol® is used several times a day as directed by a physician, a patient can expect to recover in ten days or less. There are very few risks of side effects when the drug is used correctly, though serious allergic reactions are possible.
A dentist or physician usually decides to prescribe Aphthasol® if home remedies and over-the-counter medications fail to provide relief for a patient with frequent outbreaks of painful canker sores. It is not clear exactly how the topical paste works, but studies suggest that it has strong anti-inflammatory properties. Aphthasol® inhibits the immune system's natural response that would otherwise trigger inflammation, swelling, and pain. In addition, the paste provides a protective coating to open sores to reduce the chance of bacterial infections.
Aphthasol® is supplied as a light-brown paste that comes in a squeezable tube. Patients are usually instructed to apply a liberal dab of the paste to every sore in their mouths four times a day. It is important for the mouth to be clean before application and to avoid eating and drinking for about an hour after application. To make the dosing schedule easy to follow, doctors generally suggest using the paste after each meal and at bedtime, immediately after brushing and rinsing.
A patient can use Aphthasol® daily until his or her canker sores are completely healed. In most cases, recovery takes about ten days. If lesions reappear or fail to get better after two weeks, it is important to schedule another appointment with the doctor. The physician can run tests to see if the sores might be signs of more serious underlying health conditions and prescribe other treatments as necessary.
Side effects are rare with Aphthasol®. It is common to experience a mild, temporary burning or tingling sensation as the paste is applied. Burning usually subsides within a few seconds or minutes. The medication is tasteless, but some patients are not able to tolerate the feeling of the paste in their mouths and become nauseous. Very rarely, an allergic reaction can occur that causes major swelling in the mouth and airways. An individual should flush his or her mouth and contact a doctor right away if signs of a serious reaction develop.