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My 2-year-old has a couple of sores on his tongue -- what are they?

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My son has a couple of sores on his tongue. I talked to his pediatrician and he suggests Benadryl and Mylanta to coat the ulcers in his mouth. My son is 2 and he has had this before. My question is what are they, how are they caused, and how can this be prevented?


Your son has stomatitis, which is sores or ulcers inside the mouth. Because he has only a couple of sores on the tongue, he most likely has the mild form of aphthous (AF-thus) ulcers. The cause of aphthous ulcers is unknown. Minor oral trauma, such as biting the tongue or eating something too hot, may sometimes precipitate an ulcer, but not always. These ulcers may be hereditary. They come in groups of one to five lesions on the tongue or inside the lips or cheeks and they heal in seven to 10 days. They commonly recur. Aphthous ulcers may be a symptom of a couple of rare diseases that are very unlikely if your child is generally healthy and eats a normal diet. Your pediatrician has recommended a good treatment plan. In severe cases, you should be watchful of dehydration from refusing to drink. Unfortunately, there really is nothing that prevents aphthous ulcers.  

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