Background: Recurrent aphthous ulceration represents a very common mucosal disorder that general dentists may encounter on a daily basis, and for which there is no curative treatment. The best treatment that can be achieved is to avoid local traumatic precipitants, lessen the pain and duration of ulceration by suppressing the local immune response, and prevent secondary infection.
Objective: The objective of this study was to clinically determine the efficacy of honey as a topical treatment of recurrent minor aphthous ulceration in a Saudi cohort.
Method and materials: A randomized, blind, controlled, parallel, double-center clinical trial was carried out. Honey was applied by patients four times a day for 5 days. Clinical parameters (ulcer size, pain scale, and degree of erythema and healing) were recorded both at baseline and during the follow-up period.
Results: There were 94 subjects, with 180 minor recurrent aphthous ulcerations. The ulcers were distributed as 67, 57, and 56 ulcers for honey, topical corticosteroid, and Orabase treatment, respectively. There was a statistically significant difference between the honey group and the other two groups in terms of reduction of ulcer size, days of pain, and degree of erythema. No side effects were reported in any group.
Conclusion: Honey was found to be effective and safe in reducing minor aphthous ulcer pain, size, and erythema in a Saudi cohort.