What is small tongue swelling and how does go down?

By | 19 February 2021


What is small tongue swelling? How does small tongue swelling go down?

The small tongue is a fleshy piece of tissue, the medical name of which is the uvula, located in the part where the oral cavity meets the pharynx. This piece, suspended at the very back of the palate, consists of mucosa, connective and muscle tissue, and saliva secreting ducts and allows food to be pushed from the mouth to the pharynx.

Sometimes, in cases of infection and similar situations, the uvula swells and causes a condition called small tongue swelling. It causes a feeling of pain when swallowing and the presence of a foreign body in the throat, causing discomfort in the patient.

Although it is usually a temporary situation, when it lasts for a long time and the edema in the small tongue is very severe, the ability to swallow is also affected and the patient begins to have difficulty feeding. For this reason, it is beneficial to apply to a physician for an examination in case of small tongue swelling that does not heal spontaneously within a few days.

What is small tongue swelling?

Small tongue swelling can be caused by many reasons, but it is usually a disease that develops due to irritation or infections. Small tongue inflammation called uvulitis can cause difficulty in swallowing and breathing and uncomfortable pain. Generally, it is not a serious condition and it can recover spontaneously within a few days with simple measures that can be taken at home.

However, in cases where it is very severe, nutrition is completely prevented or breathing becomes difficult, medical treatment should be obtained as soon as possible by applying to health institutions. Swelling in the small tongue alone is usually seen in edema due to irritation. Swallowing hard and sharp foods without chewing is the most common cause of this small tongue swelling. Apart from this, uvulitis is very common with throat infections. With the help of throat sprays, antibiotic and antiviral treatments, and mouthwashes, such uvula infections can be successfully treated.

What are the symptoms of minor tongue swelling?

Since the small tongue is in a position that can be easily seen with the opening of the mouth, it can be easily noticed in case of edema or inflammation. Symptoms of uvulitis are generally similar to those of throat infection, and the most common symptoms can be listed as follows:

  • Pain and burning sensation in the throat
  • Itching in the throat and small tongue area
  • Visible redness and spots in the throat
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Trouble breathing

Simple infections of the small tongue usually do not require medical treatment. Since the infection will be cured within a few days with the use of soft foods, not choosing very hot and very cold foods, the use of throat spray and mouthwash, the symptoms start to disappear gradually. However, in addition to the above symptoms, if there are fever, abdominal pain, and an uncomfortable swelling in the small tongue, a health institution should be consulted immediately. When a throat infection that has reached these dimensions is not treated, the necessary sensitivity should be shown because it may progress to the lower respiratory tract and cause more serious diseases.

What are the causes of minor tongue swelling?

Many factors can cause minor tongue swelling. Inflammation in the uvula develops as a result of the body being attacked for any reason. Some of these factors are:

  • Infections
  • Trauma and irritations
  • Structural disorders in the mouth and throat
  • Genetic factors
  • Environmental factors and lifestyle changes
  • Allergic reactions
  • Snore
  • The weakening of the immune system

The factors given above are general conditions that can often be effective in minor tongue swelling. Individuals who are allergic to dust, animal hair, pollen, or some foods have a much higher frequency of throat infections and uvulitis than other individuals. In these cases, allergic reactions such as swelling and redness can be observed in different parts of the body, as well as a small tongue and throat. Some medications that are used continuously can also expose the uvula area to infections. Exposure to chemical substances is another factor that creates a risk factor for getting uvulitis. Throat infections are frequently seen in people who use cigarettes and other tobacco products or are exposed to the smoke of these substances, and those who live in places with polluted air due to these reasons.

How is minor tongue swelling diagnosed?

Patients who have serious complaints such as fever, severe edema, and difficulty in breathing should consult a healthcare institution immediately if the problem of swelling in their small tongue does not heal spontaneously within a few days. In such patients who require medical treatment, a detailed physical examination is primarily performed by the physician. During this examination, while the mouth and throat area are carefully examined under light, the medical history of the patient, the drug information used, and the diseases in his family are learned.

Patients should inform their physicians about all prescription and non-prescription drugs they use, new foods they have recently tried, chemicals and unusual substances they have been exposed to, symptoms they experience, and whether they use cigarettes and tobacco products during the examination so that they can receive the most accurate diagnosis and treatment.

The health problem that causes small tongue swelling can usually be diagnosed with a physical examination and the treatment process can be started. However, especially in infectious swelling, to diagnose whether the infection that causes inflammation is bacterial, viral, or fungal, a culture can be taken from the relevant area and sent to laboratories for examination. Also, some blood tests and endoscopic applications may be requested if deemed necessary by the physician to make a diagnosis. In addition to treatment in uvulitis caused by allergic reactions, it may be necessary to apply allergy tests and lifestyle changes to stay away from the factor causing the reaction. As a result of all these evaluations, the diagnosis of the disease can be made and the treatment process can be planned.

How is small tongue swelling treated?

The form of treatment for small tongue swelling varies according to the factor that causes edema in the uvula. No medical treatment is required for uvulitis caused by infection due to a simple cause such as a common cold, and the disease can be cured within a few days by taking personal precautions such as taking plenty of fluids to prevent dryness of the throat, more attention to the mouth and dental care.

However, if there is an infection in more serious cases, antibiotic, antiviral, or antifungal treatments should be applied. For this, first of all, the microbial agent causing the infection should be determined and the drug treatment that will affect it should be prescribed by the physician. In addition to the antibiotics taken in the form of medications, the use of mouthwashes and antiseptic-containing throat sprays provides significant benefits. In cases of allergy, appropriate antihistamines and corticosteroid-containing drugs should be used, as well as an allergy test should be done to learn the agents that cause sensitivity in the person and avoid them.

Throat dryness and related throat infections can be observed with the deterioration of the moisture balance of the environment due to the use of heaters and stoves in winter. To be protected from these, home and work environments should be regularly ventilated, drinkers should be placed in the heaters and the humidity balance of the environment should be kept under constant control. The use of cigarettes and tobacco products should be avoided, and care should be taken not to be exposed to smoke in the environments where they are used.

As a result of an appropriate treatment plan and taking the necessary personal precautions, the swelling of the small tongue heals spontaneously without causing serious problems. For this reason, if you think that you have utilities and if you are looking for answers to your questions such as how small tongue swelling goes down, it is useful to apply to a health institution immediately. With the treatment you will receive, you can protect yourself from getting the disease again and lead a healthier life by taking simple precautions against uvula and throat infections after your recovery.