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Bump on the Roof of Mouth

Bump on the roof of mouth is one of the dental conditions frequently seen by the dentist. They can be quite distressing, painful and make the act of swallowing a bit cumbersome. Bumps that develop on the roof of the mouth are symptoms of several disease conditions.

In this post, we shall examine the problem in detail, the symptoms, causes, treatment, home remedies, and when to see the doctor. So, if you have the problem or you know of anyone who has it, this is an opportunity to know exactly what to do in order to alleviate the symptoms or to completely get rid of the disease.

Picture of bump on roof of mouth


Bump on the roof of mouth comes with noticeable signs and symptoms among which are:

  • Painful lumps: With these lumps, it hurts to swallow foods sometimes
  • Hard bump: This could come from dental abscess, or torus palatinus
  • Pimple like zits inside the mouth
  • Itching of the affected areas
  • Sore: This hurts when touched
  • There could be bleeding when the bump is popped
  • There may be green or yellowish pus in the sores
  • There is sore throat especially if there is infection of the back of the throat.

Causes of Bumps on the Roof of Mouth

Bumps on roof of mouth are caused by various factors. Some of the known causes include the following:


Using pipes to smoke can ultimately result in the individual developing a condition known as “Nicotine stomatitis” or “smoker’s palate”. The condition is distinguished by the appearance of white bumps on the roof of the mouth.There may also be red depressions on the centers of the bumps.

Epstein pearls

Also referred to as palatal cysts or gingival cysts, the condition is common in a newborn baby’s mouth or in little children. The gums or palate has whitish or yellowish bumps. Research shows that about 80% of kids are likely to suffer from Epstein pearls. The condition usually subsides and disappears on its own accord.

Incisive papilla

They are bumps that appear on the mouth’s roof just behind front teeth. They are sometimes enlarged and filled with fluid and are quite common. The condition is not severe and goes away in a matter of time.

Maxillary sinus growths

These are also some of the causes of bump on the roof of mouth. Since the maxillary bone lies in the upper jaw, any unusual growth in the bone can manifest as a swelling or protrusion through the upper palate and be seen as a bump.

Dental problems

When plaque and calculus form as a result of poor oral care, this could lead to a swelling on the upper jaw. Bumps due to dental issues may be distinguished by caries on the upper jaw, which run into the root canal. They sometimes result in abscess. There could be visible large bumps on roof of mouth.

Torus palatinus

Torus palatinus causes a round lump on the roof of mouth. The protrusion that occurs is usually harmless. They can be different from one individual to another, though on the average the size is about 2 mm in diameter.

Exostosis/Mandibular Torus

There is a protrusion on roof of the mouth and the side of the lower jaw. Hard or sharp food can cause an injury to the extra protrusion, leading to ulcers or painful sores. Bruises can lead to pain during and after eating and also delay healing


Allergy usually results in itchy bumps and could come from vaccines, foods and medications. However, lichen planus produces small itchy bump on the roof of mouth, which can sometimes be misunderstood for a bump from allergic reaction.


Bumps on the roof of mouth can also manifest during pregnancy, where it is referred to as pregnancy induced gingivitis. It causes swelling and bleeding but goes away after delivery.


This produces a cyst-like bump on the mouth’s roof. The main cause of this problem is a blockage of the salivary gland. It leads to the formation of a soft, painless, flexible bump characterized by a pearly or bluish color.

Mouth ulcers and spots on the roof of the mouth

Mouth ulcer can form in any part of the mouth and is usually seen as an oval sore. But it is commoner in roof of mouth, lips and cheeks. They lead to the formation of red, white or yellow bump, which hurts when touched with food or tongue. They are thought to result from anxiety and stress.

Oral cancer

Oral cancer can produce bumps on the roof of mouth that won’t go away and keeps increasing in size over time, accompanied by fever, bleeding, headache, swollen lymph nodes, etc. It can also affect other areas such as lips, tonsils, sinuses, glands, cheeks, tongue, throat, as well as floor of the mouth. The bumps can be irregular in shape and dark in color. The spreading cancer can easily cause sore throat as well.

Canker sore

They are shallow lesions or small bumps on the soft tissue of the roof of mouth. They can be noticed on the gums, followed by severe pain when touched or when chewing. Before their arrival, you may notice a burning, tingling or prickling sensation on the spot where they are set to appear. This is followed by white, yellow or gray bumps bordered by red rings after two days.

Adenocarcinoma and Swollen Salivary Glands

Cancer or infection can cause the minor salivary glands in the palate or upper part of the mouth to swell. Adenocarcinoma, a form of cancer, can easily affect those glands. The condition is frequent in pipe smokers and reverse smokers.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Bumps in the roof of mouth can be a symptom of some forms of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as herpes and HIV AIDS. While HPV leads to the formation of painful small clusters of bumps on the inside mouth, roof of mouth, and lips, HIV lowers one’s immunity level thereby creating room for opportunistic infections. In this case, yeast, which usually exists as a normal flora in the mouth can then form bumps on the roof of mouth.

Lump After a Root Canal or as a Result of Braces

Hard lump may occasionally form after root canal or surgery. This is normally seen on the roof of the mouth, close to the gums of the upper teeth. This can result from yeast infection as a result of poor oral hygiene and could start in form of a pimple.

After wisdom teeth removal: Occasionally, bumps on the roof of teeth occur after wisdom teeth removal. This can sometimes result from infection of the wound.

Sore Bump Due to Tongue Ring: The ring in your pierced tongue can mount a little pressure on the palate when the mouth is closed. The ring (being a foreign body) can cause irritation to your palate and lead to the formation of a bump on the roof of your mouth.

The tongue piercing can be infected and the infection spreads to the roof of the mouth thereby producing bumps in the affected areas.


Bump on the roof of mouth can be treated in various ways. Some of the interventions known to work effectively include:

Stop Smoking

Quitting smoking is one practical way of stopping or controlling bumps on the roof of mouth. If you smoke or after drinking alcohol persistently for a long time, white plaques and yellowish patches develop on the roof of your mouth. This gives rise to mouth odor and also creates favorable environment for bacteria to thrive and infect your mouth and the back of your throat. So, to get rid of the problem, you need to stop smoking.

Radiation and Chemotherapy

Cancerous bumps on the roof of your mouth can be treated with chemotherapy or radiation therapy. While the therapies are capable of killing the cancer cells, they also prevent their spread to other parts.


Adenocarcinoma or oral cancer can be surgically removed. This is done by a qualified surgeon or oncologist, under a local anesthesia. This helps in curtailing the spread of the cancer cells. Bumps on the roof of mouth that comes and goes, such as mucoceles, can be excised to permanently remove them. Marsupialization can be performed to assist in the formation of a new salivary gland.

Antibiotics and Antiviral Medications

Antibiotics treatments can be prescribed by the doctor for the management of bumps caused by bacteria. When there is sore throat, it is advisable to treat it with potent antibiotics drugs.

But where HIV and AIDS exist, it is better to treat with antiviral medications to help in controlling the symptoms.

Other treatments

Other treatments you can employ based on the cause and symptoms include:

  • Minimizing spicy foods
  • Rinsing the mouth with warm saline water 3-4 times daily
  • Laser treatment
  • The use of vitamin supplements to take care of the vitamin deficiency.

Home Remedies

Apart from prescription drugs, there are a lot of home remedies that can help alleviate the symptoms of bumps on the roof of the mouth. Some of the remedies are:

  • Black Tea: You can apply a bag of black tea to help reduce the irritation and pain.
  • Goldenseal Root: Rinse the mouth with a tea containing goldenseal root. This should be done at least two to three times daily, to lessen the effect of the sore.
  • Yogurt: Adding yogurt to your regular meals goes a long way in helping to prevent canker sore.
  • Honey: Apply raw honey to the roof of the mouth three to four times daily with soft cotton. This should be continued until the cold sores are gone.
  • Chewing gum: Chewing gum plays a role in helping to reduce the burning sensation. Besides, it improves saliva production and hydration of the mouth.
  • Witch Hazel and Baking Soda: Apply a paste of baking soda and witch hazel or water to the spot to take care of the sores and lower pain. It equally accelerates the rate of healing.
  • Hot Pepper Sauce: Add six drops of Tabasco sauce together with a teaspoon of water to make a hot pepper sauce. Use it to rinse your mouth and spit it out. Do it up to 4 times daily, to lessen the burning pain sensation.
  • Aloe Vera Juice: Rinse your mouth or gargle with aloe Vera juice to help lower the bumps or lumps on the roof of your mouth. As a home remedy, Aloe Vera is efficacious in reducing bumps.
  • Cold Milk: Though milk and dairy are great sources of protein, milk also plays a role in reducing pains associated with bumps. Drink some cold milk and swish it around in your mouth in a way similar to mouthwash. Using buttermilk can also be helpful.

When to See a Doctor

You should consider seeing the doctor if any of the following is present:

  • The bump is extremely painful
  • The size of the bump is increasing
  • The bump refuses to subside spontaneously
  • There is bleeding from the bump


Bump on the roof of mouth is caused by different factors. No matter the cause, there are treatments and home remedies to help alleviate the symptoms. Before commencing treatment, therefore, it is important to find out the root of the problem.

If the home remedies recommended in this post fail to help you or if you notice that there is extreme pain, increase in the size of the bump, or there is bleeding, consult your doctor immediately for further examination and management.

Pictures of Bumps on roof of mouth

Wondering how bumps on roof of mouth? Take a look at below pictures:

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