Ulcerative Colitis and Your Mouth: Sores, Ulcers, and More


Diarrhea and cramps are among the most well-known ulcerative colitis ( UC ) symptoms. They stem from excitement and sores called ulcers in the intestines. What you may not realize is ulcerative colitis sores can form in any part of your gastrointestinal ( GI ) tract, from your mouth to your anus. Mouth problems can start even ahead more distinctive symptoms like cramps and diarrhea. Some mouth sores are ephemeral and are more of a nuisance than a real trouble. Others can affect your ability to talk or eat and require your repair ’ s help oneself to manage.

Symptoms of mouth problems

ulcerative colitis mouth ulcers are often associated with the following symptoms :

  • pus-filled sores
  • canker sores
  • dry mouth
  • mouth pain
  • swollen tongue
  • bad breath
  • metallic taste or other unusual taste in the mouth


Swelling and ulcerative colitis sores can appear anywhere in your GI tract, including in your mouth. ulcerative colitis sass ulcers can besides be a slope effect of some ulcerative colitis medications that cause dry mouth and swelling in the mucous membranes. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies can besides lead to ulcerative colitis mouth sores and early problems. Inflammation in your intestines can make it harder for your body to absorb nutrients like B vitamins and iron from food. You can besides lose these nutrients when you have diarrhea.

Common mouth problems

ulcerative colitis and its treatments can cause the follow talk problems :

Mouth sores

inflammation from ulcerative colitis damages the line of the GI tract. Sores can form anywhere along this route, including in the mouth. canker sores ( aphthous stomatitis ) are afflictive white or yellow spots that form inside the mouth around the gums, lips, or spit. You ’ re more probable to get canker sores during ulcerative colitis flare-ups. They should heal once you treat the flare. Pyodermatitis-pyostomatitis vegetans is a rare circumstance that chiefly affects people with ulcerative colitis. Symptoms include a foolhardy in hide folds such as the armpits and breakwater. You may besides experience pus-filled sores inside the sass and throat .

Dry mouth

Some corticosteroids, antidiarrheal drugs, anti-inflammatory drugs, antibiotics, and anticholinergics used to treat ulcerative colitis can cause dry mouth as a side effect. Medications that may cause dry mouth include :

  • budesonide (Symbicort)
  • diphenoxylate and atropine (Lomotil)
  • loperamide (Diamode)
  • mesalamine
  • metronidazole (Flagyl)
  • propantheline

Taste changes

Some people with ulcerative colitis report a foreign metallic or acidic taste in their mouth. This symptom is more common in people with pancolitis. This austere inflammatory disease affects the entire colon and is normally caused by ulcerative colitis.

taste changes may stem from a B-12 vitamin lack. Metallic taste can be a side effect of the drugs sulfasalazine, azathioprine, and metronidazole ( Flagyl ) .

Bad breath

Bad breath ( halitosis ) much happens if you ’ ve let your oral hygiene habits lapse. In ulcerative colitis, regretful breath may be due to dry mouth. Saliva washes away dead cells and bacteria in your mouth. Those cells build up when your mouth is dry. This can leave you with an unpleasant breath aroma. Some people with ulcerative colitis who experience bad breath may have an increased grade of sulfate-reducing bacteria in the colon. This leads to higher amounts of the accelerator hydrogen sulfide, causing bad breath .

Tongue problems

glossitis is inflammation of the tongue. It ’ s relatively common in ulcerative colitis. When your tongue is swollen, it may be harder for you to eat and talk. The discipline is normally caused by a insufficiency of vitamin bc, vitamin B-12, or zinc. research suggests these deficiencies are relatively common in people with ulcerative colitis .

Inflamed lips

angular cheilitis causes well crimson patches to form in the corners and outer separate of your lips. It sometimes affects people with ulcerative colitis. The lawsuit in people with ulcerative colitis is often a vitamin B-12 or iron lack. long-run treatment with corticosteroid drugs can besides result in this symptom .


The first footprint to relieving ulcerative colitis sass sores and other mouth problems is to reduce ignition in your gastrointestinal tract and get your ulcerative colitis under control. Medications like aminosalicylates ( 5-ASAs ), corticosteroids, immunomodulators, and biologics calm the hyperactive immune system reaction that causes inflammation and sores. Your doctor of the church will help you find the proper drug or drugs to manage your ulcerative colitis. An antiseptic gargle can help keep your talk clean while your sores heal. Taking a multivitamin or mineral accessory and eating a balance diet helps to prevent the alimentary deficiencies that can cause ulcerative colitis sass ulcers and early mouth problems. speak to your doctor of the church if you think a medication you take for ulcerative colitis could be causing these symptoms. Your sophisticate may recommend alternate treatments less likely to cause mouth sores or suggest other ways to manage this side consequence .

When to see a doctor

Let your doctor know if you have any new symptoms in your mouthpiece or other parts of your digestive tract. besides call if your sass problems affect your ability to eat or talk.

The takeaway

Mouth problems aren ’ t the most common symptoms of ulcerative colitis. They sometimes appear before more common symptoms such as diarrhea and stomach cramps. Watch for sores, swelling, annoyance, and taste changes and report them to your repair. Changing your treatment or adding a nutritional addendum may help to relieve these issues. Read this article in spanish .

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