Lichen planus – Oral Health Foundation


What’s oral lichen planus?

Lichen planus is a long-lasting illness, which may have an effect on the mouth and typically different areas of the physique.

When it seems in your mouth it’s known as ‘oral lichen planus’. It may well seem by itself or as a part of a illness affecting different elements of your physique. Oral lichen planus often occurs from center age onwards, and extra ladies get it than males.

What are the indicators and signs of oral lichen planus?

Lichen planus reveals in many alternative methods. The commonest indicators are white patches on the liner of your mouth (often your cheeks, tongue and gums). These do not often damage, however typically there could be redness, ulcers or, very not often, blistering in addition to the white patches. In that case, you might discover it painful to eat sizzling or spicy meals.

What’s the explanation for oral lichen planus?

We have no idea the reason for lichen planus in most sufferers.

It might be an indication of a slight weak point within the physique’s immune (defence) system, however sufferers with lichen planus do not often have some other issues. Often it may be attributable to a response to medicines corresponding to some painkillers, diabetic therapies, medication for hypertension, beta-blockers, gold, or penicillamine. Oral lichen planus doesn’t appear to be attributable to an an infection, and it does not run in households. Emotional stress, spicy meals or citrus fruits can typically trigger the signs to worsen.

How is oral lichen planus recognized?

Normally will probably be recognized after a cautious examination by a specialist. The looks and signs of oral lichen planus could be like these of another problems, so a ‘biopsy’ is often wanted to make sure in regards to the analysis. A biopsy is a quite simple process, accomplished beneath a neighborhood anaesthetic, the place a small piece of tissue is faraway from the mouth. The world often heals inside 7 to 10 days.

What’s the remedy of oral lichen planus?

Normally oral lichen planus solely must be handled when there are painful signs. Generally sufferers with white patches that aren’t painful complain of a slight roughness of the liner of the mouth. However this often doesn’t want any remedy. When oral lichen planus does want treating, it’s often accomplished by placing a corticosteroid cream on the world. Some areas may have different therapies, corresponding to immunosuppressants utilized to the world. Very not often you would possibly must take a corticosteroid or another, related, tablets.

Observe any recommendation your dental workforce might provide you with. This may increasingly embody avoiding issues that make the situation worse, corresponding to spicy meals and issues you might be allergic to. Your dentist may refer you to your physician or a specialist for additional investigations.

Does oral lichen planus go away?

Normally oral lichen planus by no means goes away. Sufferers will often proceed to have white patches on the liner of the mouth. Remedy will reduce the ache, though it’s not often potential to inform beforehand when the situation will develop into painful.

Are there any long-term problems of oral lichen planus?

There could also be some connection between oral lichen planus and most cancers of the mouth. Round 1 to three % of sufferers who’ve had lichen planus for a very long time might go on to develop mouth cancer. The precise connection between oral lichen planus and most cancers will not be sure. Solely a only a few sufferers with oral lichen planus ever develop most cancers.

Can I cease myself getting oral lichen planus?

Because the trigger is often not recognized it’s inconceivable to cease oral lichen planus taking place. To keep away from the chance of great illness of the liner of your mouth:

Whether or not you will have oral lichen planus or not, it’s best to clear your tooth final thing at night time and at the least one different time throughout the day with a fluoride toothpaste. You must also have your tooth and gums checked commonly by a dentist in order that any modifications within the lining of your mouth can simply be noticed.

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Want extra recommendation?

Should you want free and neutral recommendation about your oral well being, contact our Dental Helpline by e mail or name 01788 539780 (native charge name within the UK).

Our Dental Helpline is totally confidential and has helped nearly 400,000 folks since opening over 20 years in the past. Contact our specialists by phone, e mail or on-line enquiry, Monday to Friday, 09:00 – 17:00.


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