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Mouth Diseases

Bumps in My Mouth and I Don’t Know What to Do

09/15/2010

Question:

Hi..I am writing to you becasue I have Torus Mandibularis..It is in my lower Jaw...They havent gotten bigger.My questions is I read somewhere that having Torus Mandibularis is considered normal anatomy..does that mean I shouldn`t have surgery and decide to remove them?..I mean it doesnt bother me when i eat..It just looks bad for me to see these bumps everytime i look in the mirror and brush my teeth..it really brings down my self-esteem..Are these types of bumps contagious also? Im scared of having surgery for these types of bumps I have..I wish I didnt have them..Is there anything I can do or any medicine i can take to make these specific bumps disappear? Also, when i brush my teeth over these bumps..they start to bleed..Should I be concerned about that? or should i just stop brushing my teeth over them so they wont bleed anymore? I really worry about having these bumps because if they are considered normal anatomy,does that mean I should just leave them alone and have it my whole life?..I really need your help for my own state of mind...because I keep worrying if these torus mandibularis bumps are a real problem or is it common for people to have these kind of bumps? and if so,,does that mean surgery isnt necessary? Thankyou soo much for reading all my questions and i hope you can truly answer each one...thankyou soo much once again.

Answer:

Mandibular tori (torus mandibularis) are quite common. About one person out of four has these harmless collections of extra bone on the inner surface of the lower jaw. I happen to have them, in fact. They do get in the way occasionally, such as when I am eating tortilla chips. Then the mucosa (skin) that covers the bony bumps can be torn (it is rather thin), but it typically heals in a few days.

If you are tearing the mucosa when you are brushing your teeth, then you are probably brushing too hard or using an incorrect technique. You might want to see your dental hygienist about your oral hygiene procedures. There is no reason to remove mandibular tori unless a person has to have a lower denture ("plate") made.

The surgery to remove them is standard, but sounds brutal. With the patient numb, a chisel is used to knock the tori off the surface of the bone. There will be open sores for a few weeks in the area where the tori were attached, so it's a procedure that I would recommend only if it's absolutely necessary for denture construction. There are also no medications that will get rid of mandibular tori. They are completely harmless, and in most people, there is no reason to remove them. I plan to keep mine for the rest of my life.

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Response by:

Carl M Allen, DDS, MSD Carl M Allen, DDS, MSD
Professor Emeritus of Oral Pathology
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University