Mouth ulcers, otherwise known as canker sores or aphthous ulcers, can be quite painful. Starting as a small red patch, these sores become increasingly inflamed and eventually develop a white or yellowish spot in the middle. Although sometimes only the size of a pencil eraser, these sores are hard to ignore and can hurt whenever you eat or drink.

These six natural remedies can help you find relief and reduce the pain and inflammation.

1. Coconut Oil
Anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and incredibly tasty, coconut oil is extremely beneficial in soothing the pain from mouth ulcers. Dab two to four drops of coconut oil over the sore using your fingers or a cotton swab. You can also use coconut milk extracted from a fresh coconut. Simply rinse your mouth with it three to four times a day for relief. (Related Article: 4 Ways To Use Coconut Oil For Natural Health)

2. Aloe Vera
This plant is known for its antimicrobial and antiseptic properties. Applying aloe gel on the affected area or rinsing your mouth with aloe juice three times a day can alleviate the pain and promote healing. (Related Article: Vitamin B For Your Skin: Aloe Vera Face Pack)

3. Honey
The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of honey makes it an effective remedy for treating canker sores. Raw organic honey makes an excellent coating for a painful canker sore. Dip a cotton swab in organic honey and apply it evenly over the sore two to three times during the day. Alternatively you can make a paste with ½ tsp of turmeric and ½ tsp of honey and dab it over the affected area. (Related Article: Honey — A Possible Alternative To Antibiotics?)

4. Basil
The leaves of the basil plant are known to promote healing, while also exhibiting antibacterial and antifungal properties. Chew four to five basil leaves with water twice a day. This will make the sores go away, prevent recurrence, and also keep bad breath at bay. (Related Slideshow: 9 Reasons Basil Is Good For Your Health)

5. Licorice
This root comes with marked anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, while also acting as a demulcent that forms a protective coating on the mucous membrane in the mouth and reduces irritation. Soak 1tbsp of licorice powder in two cups of water for three to four hours. Use this mixture to rinse your mouth several times a day. Another way to use licorice powder is to mix a teaspoon of it in 1tbsp honey or glycerin and apply it to the sore. (Related Article: 6 Ways To Heal Naturally With Licorice Root)

6. Peppermint & Eucalyptus Oil
Both peppermint and eucalyptus oil have astringent, anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties. These oils tighten the tissue around the wound and relieve discomfort caused by swelling or fluid buildup. Make a DIY spray by mixing 10 drops of peppermint oil with seven to eight drops of eucalyptus oil in a glass mister bottle. Cap the bottle and shake well before spraying some directly over the sore.

While a canker sore is a fairly short lived misery, a mouth ulcer that persists should not be taken lightly. Speak to your doctor if you suffer from recurrent canker sores, as a painless mouth ulcer can be an early sign of oral cancer.

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