The mouth is smooth, but sometimes you will feel lumps or bumps. In general, there is nothing to worry about when this happens, but in some situations, they can mean something more serious.
Biting the inside of your lip or scratching your gums with a toothbrush will usually result in a canker sore. These injuries will cause a bump that will heal in about two weeks.
If you notice a new bump or lump that wasn’t there before and is not going away, you need to watch it closely and let us know about it as soon as possible.
Self-examinations are an important preventive measure and we can teach you how to look for abnormalities. There are two types of growths that can develop in the mouth, noncancerous and pre-cancerous.
• Noncancerous growths are common and can feel like lumps. They can be removed with surgery when necessary. There are several types of noncancerous growths such ordinary warts, thrush, torus, growths that form on the lips, cysts, and tumors in the salivary glands.
• Precancerous tissue can appear red, white or a combination of both and doesn’t disappear after two weeks. If these growths are not removed, they could become cancerous. Symptoms of early-stage oral cancer usually go unnoticed because there is no pain in most cases.
Most growths in the mouth are noncancerous and things such as warts can be removed. If you smoke or drink alcohol you are at a higher risk for oral cancer. Other warning signs of a more serious problem are weight loss and a lump in the neck.
When our dentist suspects that a lump in your mouth is pre-cancerous a biopsy will be ordered. When the lump is noncancerous treatment will depend on the causes of the growth and in some cases, it can be removed. Most of the time a lump in the mouth will go away on its own.