What is this strange bump in my mouth?
January 28, 2005 9:33 AM   Subscribe

Sometimes I get a small little bump in my mouth that feels like a wart or something. I can pop it easily with my finger just by pushing on it and fluid comes out, and it goes away. What are these things technically? Is swallowing the popped juice dangerous?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (13 answers total)
Does the bump hurt at all? Does it always occur in the same place?

I ask because if the answer to both it yes, it could be an oral cyst. Cysts will swell and burst, releasing fluid, but not actually disappear- they have to be surgically removed. As for the fluid, if it's a cyst, then swallowing is very dangerous, as the fluid is what can spread the infection. I'm not sure though, because generally cysts form from hair follicles, which obviously don't appear inside one's mouth.

I should also point out that oral infections are of course a sympton of many sexually transmitted diseases. If this is a possibility, it's necessary to point that out to a doctor should you seek medical attention.

I don't want to scare you, because we have no idea what it looks like, but generally any internal growth I would say call a doctor, or at least a physician. Tumors or cysts developing inside the mouth can spread to the throat, and kill you.

That said, it could easily be a form of pimple or wart, which I don't think is dangerous. As is the general rule, if you don't know, the side of caution is a really good side to err on.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:47 AM on January 28, 2005

(Eww. Is there a way to answer questions anonymously?) If they are randomly placed, really thin and easily popped, with clear fluid instead of goop inside, I'd suspect a simple blister caused by a food allergy or something. I've had something like that in the past.
posted by Tubes at 9:56 AM on January 28, 2005

I get one whenever I eat pineapple. The first time I noticed it, it really freaked me out.
posted by jmevius at 10:03 AM on January 28, 2005

photos - we need photos
posted by whatisish at 10:05 AM on January 28, 2005

Maybe a food allergy?
posted by robbie01 at 10:41 AM on January 28, 2005

If the sore is on the inside of the mouth (and not a cyst) then it is probably a canker sore and more than likely harmless. i get those too and had them looked at the first time because I was freaked.

Sores on the outside of the mouth are probably a form of herpes which many people have, but it is a good idea to have those tested as soon as they show up.

IANAD, and you should seek medical advice only from those qualified to give it.
posted by terrapin at 10:42 AM on January 28, 2005

I agree with terrapin, it sounds like a canker sore and nothing to worry about.

IAANAD, and you should seek medical advice only from those qualified to give it.
posted by modofo at 10:45 AM on January 28, 2005

This doesn't sound like a canker sore - I've had this happen, and the bumps are painless. Like a poster above, it happens when I eat too much citrus in one sitting. It may be allergy related, not sure, but I'm nearly certain that it is harmless (especially with an absence of pain - however, the usual disclaimers apply. I am not a doctor)
posted by annathea at 11:04 AM on January 28, 2005

I get these from time to time, and a dentist once told me that they are blocked salivary glands. The bump is a buildup of spit produced by the gland. He offered to surgically remove the offending gland, but it really doesn't seem worth the effort since the thing is painless and easily popped.
posted by bendy at 11:10 AM on January 28, 2005

canker sores wouldn't have fluid bursting from them. I'm glad to see thought that more people relate it to a food reaction, and not my worst-case scenario fears ;)
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:34 PM on January 28, 2005

bendy is probably right. it's called a mucocele.
posted by RockyChrysler at 2:04 PM on January 28, 2005

I get these too, usually in the back of my mouth. They look sorta like a tapioca ball just under the translucent skin, and when they burst, a sort of salty fluid comes out. I also sometimes get them when I have a fever, or am feeling particularly hay-feverish. I've gotten them for years, never seemed problamatic. They do hurt a little when they form in bizarre annoying places. Hurt maybe isn't the right word...it's just like having a chunk of food stuck to the roof of your mouth that you can't remove. Annoying.
posted by stray at 4:43 PM on January 28, 2005

Sounds like various people are talking about various different things. Anon's description sounds like bendy's; I have these too, and I've always assumed they were blocked salivary glands (glad to hear that that's not an unreasonable idea). They appear in different places and last a few days before they go away.

I also get the occasional canker sore, which doesn't sound at all like Anon's description.
posted by hattifattener at 9:53 PM on January 28, 2005

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