Any time a new lump or bump forms on any part of our body, it can be a cause for alarm. And if it’s located in our mouth, it can really cause concern. In fact, some people immediately fear a diagnosis of oral cancer, when it could actually be a harmless cyst (mucocele), so it’s important to contact your dentist Columbia Gregory Wychg as soon as you notice one!
A mucocele focuses on the small salivary gland that produces the saliva in your mouth, which moves from a salivary gland through tiny ducts into your mouth. If one of these ducts becomes damaged or blocked, mucus seeps out, pools, becomes walled off, and then causes a cyst-like swelling, typically on the inside of your lower lips, your gums, the roof of your mouth, or under your tongue.
Your dentist Columbia finds that those found on the floor of the mouth are rare, but because they’re larger, they can cause more problems with speech, chewing, and swallowing.
Mucoceles are typically:
- Moveable and painless;
- Soft, round, dome-shaped;
- Pearly or bluish in color;
- 2 to 10 millimeters in diameter.
At times, mucoceles fad away without treatment; but sometimes they get larger. If this is the case, don't try to treat them yourself at home; see your dentist Columbia for expert advice.
These are the two types of treatment your dentist Columbia uses most often:
Removal of the salivary gland using a scalpel or laser after administering local anesthesia to numb the pain.
Helping a new duct to form. During this procedure, the dentist:
- Disinfects the area;
- Puts a stitch through the mucocele and ties a knot;
- Gently presses out saliva;
- Removes the stitch after about a week.
Other types of treatment that may prevent the need for surgery include steroid injections and medications applied to the surface of the mucocele.
If left untreated, some mucoceles can cause permanent scarring, but with proper diagnosis and treatment, the outlook is good.
So if you or anyone in your family finds a lump or bump in their mouth, be on the safe side and call your dentist Columbia Dr. Gregory Wych for an appointment!