Facts on throat ulcers

Updated March 23, 2017

Throat ulcers are painful and life-disrupting, and should be looked at by a medical professional so that they can be treated as soon as possible.


Throat ulcers are open sores at the back of the throat. Symptoms of these sores include sore throat, pain when swallowing, and trouble eating or talking.


These ulcers are usually between 1/4 of an inch and 1/3 of an inch in diameter.


There are many different factors that can cause throat ulcers, including fungal infections, trauma to the throat area, bacterial infections, acid reflux disease, eating disorders characterised by forced vomiting, genetic disorders and diseases such as oral herpes, primary syphilis and candida infection of the oral area (also called oral thrush).

Time Frame

Throat ulcers can last anywhere from a few weeks to several months, and can also go away with treatment but reappear again on a regular basis.


Throat ulcers can be misdiagnosed as food allergies, thyroid problems or hormonal imbalances.


A doctor should be consulted as soon as possible when throat ulcers appear so treatment can begin. This can include antibiotics, a change of diet, recovery from an eating disorder, staying away from acidic or spicy photos, and rinsing often with medical mouthwash that can keep bacteria from reforming in the oral area.

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About the Author

Melissa Voelker has been a professional writer since 2002. She works full time at a TV station in the commercial traffic department and also writes for and Her articles have appeared in "Listen," "The Spokesman Review" and "Freepress Houston."