Mucocele: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Mucocele is also called mucous cyst. It is a small swelling filled with fluid and appear on the lip or the mouth. This mucous cyst develops when the mouth salivary glands are filled with mucus. Mucocele appears mostly on lower lip but, can appear anywhere in the mouth.

You can feel a little swelling in your mouth. It is obvious to get little worried when a new lump or swelling forms on your body. If you or your any family member feels a soft swelling in the mouth, it may just be a mucocele, a harmless cyst. Even you know it is not harmful and just a simple mouth cyst but still it is a good idea to get it checked out, although, it is not problematic.

Causes of Mucocele

The first question comes across in your mind is, where does a mucocele come from? It centers on a small salivary gland and it makes saliva in your mouth.

Here is what happens to your mouth:

Saliva in mouth moves from salivary glands through tiny tubes called ducts. When one of these ducts (tubes) becomes damaged or blocked. This damage of the duct creates cysts in mouth, which is usually called Mucocele. This mucocele most often occurs, if you repeatedly bite or suck on your lower lip or cheek. If someone hits at your face, it is highly possible one of the duct get injured or damaged and cause cyst into your mouth. By hitting the duct or tube gets disrupted.Any injury at face or head during any game can be the cause of mucocele.

When the duct has damaged, the next thing is mucus seeps out and pools, it becomes separated from the surface. At this point this causes a cyst-like swelling. A same buildup happens to the mouth when the duct has become blocked.

Symptoms of the Mucocele

Mucocele often showstheir appearance inside your lower lips, under your upper lip, at your gums, the roof of your mouth, or under your tongue. Those mucocele which occurson the floor of the mouth are called ranulas. These are rare to happen, but because they are larger in size and time, so they can cause more problems with talking, eating, chewing, and swallowing.

Some Common Characteristics of Mucocele:

  • These mucoceles are moveable and painless.
  • The shape of mucoceles is round and domed.
  • These mucoceles are soft.
  • These mucoceles are white in color, having semi-clear surface or bluish in color.
  • The size of the mucoceles is2 to 10 millimeters in diameter.

Treatment for Mucocele

Mucoceles often do not need any specific treatment. They go away without treatment after some time. Usually after 1 or 2 weeks. But sometimes they last for a long time. Do not try to open or touch the mucocele. Do not treat them yourself. Visit your doctor, your child’s pediatrician, or your dentist for expert advice and proper treatment.

Types of Treatment

These are the two types of treatment of mucocele, a doctor or dentist will commonly advise you:

  1. Removal of gland. 

The dentist or doctor generally uses a scalpel or laser to remove the salivary gland that has been blocked. Dentists give local anesthesia that numbs the pain before the removal of the gland.

  • Forming a new duct. 

Dentists and doctors sometime, according to the case they form a new duct, which process is called marsupialization. Marsupialization is a new technique which helps a new tube to be form and helps saliva to leave the salivary gland.

The dentist and doctors both are helpful for this treatment.

  • Doctors disinfect the area.
  • Put stitches through the mucocele and ties a knot.
  • Gently presses out salivary gland.
  • Removes the stitch after a week.