If you are have a soft swelling in your mouth, chances are that it can be a mucocele. Mucocele is a harmless cyst which forms in the mouth. These cysts usually happen when there is some kind of blockage in the salivary glands.

Saliva reaches the mouth from a gland through ducts which are like tiny tubes. If one of the tubes is injured or blocked, the saliva accumulates at that point leading to swelling. Mucocele usually appear on the lower lip area and they are at times found on the inner cheek, roof as well as the floor of the mouth. When a mucocele occurs on the lower area of mouth, it is called ranula.


Mucous cysts or mucocele are usually caused due to the following:
1. Injury to salivary glands
2. Lip biting
3. Piercings
4. Damage caused by adjacent teeth
5. Cheek biting

Symptoms and Characteristics

The average size of a mucocele usually ranges from 1 mm to a few centimetres. These cysts are transparent and can last from days to years. The mucocele can be recurrent in some people due to frequent blockages in the ducts.

Usually a mucocele is painless, soft and oval in shape and are pearly or mild blue in color. They might get annoying at times and can cause irritation while eating or talking. Deep mucoceles last for a longer period; the shallow ones do burst at time releasing some fluid. If the cyst is very largeand the appearance of cyst looks like a liposarcoma then a biopsy might be needed to confirm the diagnosis and then decide on the treatment.


Usually mucocele heal on their own in quick time. However, there can be times when they get chronic and need to be removed surgically.Laser technique is one of the common ways to get rid of mucoceles wherein laser pulses are directed to remove the cyst.


Treating mucocele with laser

Micro marsupialization is yet another method to get relief from mucoceles. This is a painless process and is simple and easy for children and elderly patients.

One of the home remedies for getting relief from mucoceles in to rinse the mouth with salt water. Repetition of this activity four to five times a day on daily basis can give relief from these harmless oral cysts. If they persist, then the dentist can easily and swiftly zap therm out.