Northwest Oncology & Hematology

Rolling Meadows Office: 847.870.4100
Elk Grove Village Office: 847.437.3312
Hoffman Estates Office: 847.885.4100
Barrington Office: 847.842.0180
Elgin Office: 847.577.1023

Welcome to our health education library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

Mouth Care During ChemotherapyEl cuidado de la boca durante la quimioterapia

Mouth Care During Chemotherapy

Call the Doctor If:

  • You develop mouth sores

  • Mouth pain keeps you from eating

Mouth sores (stomatitis) and dry mouth are common side effects of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. These side effects occur because these treatments affect normal cells as well as cancer cells. Using the tips on this handout may help you feel better.

 Remedies That Help

  • Rinse with 1/2 teaspoon baking soda in a glass of water. This helps keep your mouth free of germs.

  • Use products that coat and protect the mouth and throat. Or use medications that coat and soothe mouth sores themselves.

  • Numb your mouth and throat with special sprays or lozenges to make eating easier.

Prevent Mouth Sores

Image of woman
Rinse with baking soda.

  • Buy a special type of soft toothbrush, mild toothpaste, and mouthwash without alcohol.

  • Gently brush your teeth and gums.

  • Have your dentist treat any dental problems before therapy begins.

Moisten a Dry Mouth

  • Drink plenty of water. Take frequent sips, or keep a spray bottle.

  • Suck on sugar-free candy and lozenges. Chew gum.

  • Use products that moisten the mouth if your doctor prescribes them.

  • Apply lip balm to help prevent dry lips.

  • Avoid mouthwash that contains alcohol.

Choose Foods Less Likely to Irritate

Try foods that are:

  • Soft and go down smoothly, such as a milkshake or food pur¬©ed with a blender

  • Served cold or at room temperature

  • Cooked until tender and cut into small pieces

Date Last Reviewed: 2003-08-14T00:00:00-06:00

Date Last Modified:

Contact us at Northwest Oncology & Hematology. You can reach us at 847.870.4100 (Rolling Meadows office), 847.437.3312 (Elk Grove Village office), 847.885.4100 (Hoffman Estates office), 847.842.0180 (Barrington office) and 847.577.1023 (Elgin office)For your convenience, you can also use our New Patient Appointment online form to schedule your consultation with us.

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