Swollen Roof of Mouth


At times, you may experience swelling on the roof of your mouth. Medically, this spot is known as your palate, and it can swell for a variety of reasons. From burning your mouth on food to allergies, you can develop a swollen roof of the mouth for a variety of reasons. In more serious cases, this could be caused by palate cancer, mononucleosis, severe allergic reactions or the Epstein-Barr virus. If you think that it could be a more serious condition, you may need to visit a doctor to get professional help.

The Causes of a Swollen Roof of the Mouth and Possible Treatment Options

1. Palate Cancer

One of the scariest causes of a swollen roof of the mouth is palate cancer. This extremely rare condition can develop among anyone, but it is most common among smokers. If you smoke pipes, cigars or cigarettes or use chewing tobacco, you may be at risk. Likewise, alcohol consumption and leukoplakia make this condition more common. If the cause of your swelling is palate cancer, you may also have problems swallowing, weight loss, mouth lesions, general swelling in the mouth, night sweats and lumps.

Treating palate cancer is possible, but it is most effective when done early. Surgery may be done to stop the cancer from swelling to the lymph nodes and other organs. If this is done, the doctor will most likely use laser microsurgery. Other treatment options include chemotherapy and radiation.

2. Mononucleosis

Known as the “kissing disease”, mononucleosis is not actually spread by kissing—although it is possible to contract it through exchanging saliva. It is caused by the Epstein-Barr virus and is typically found among adolescents and young adults. Initial symptoms of mononucleosis include swollen tonsils, a high fever, an extremely bad sore throat, fatigue, swollen glands, weakness and swollen tonsils. If mononucleosis is not treated right away, it can cause the spleen to burst. Due to this, you should immediately seek medical treatment if you think that you have mononucleosis and should visit the emergency room right away if you have pain in the upper left portion of your abdomen.

Fortunately, mononucleosis is fairly easy to treat. After visiting your doctor, you will be diagnosed with mononucleosis after your blood tests come back positive. You will most likely be told to return home and get plenty of rest. Gargling with salt water will help to cure the infection and will help to soothe any soreness that you may feel in your throat. Likewise, you will be told to avoid any strenuous physical exercise and may be recommended to use a pain reliever. Adolescents should avoid taking aspirin unless told to by their doctor since this can cause other medical issues.

3. Allergies

One of the most common causes of a swollen roof the mouth is an allergic reaction. Your body may treat certain foods or irritants as foreign invaders and cause an inflammatory response. This can cause swelling, diarrhea, hives, breathing problems, runny nose, sneezing, sinus pain, coughing, vomiting, wheezing and shortness of breath.

Treating an allergy is best done by avoiding whatever item you are allergic to. Additionally, you will want to find the source of the allergy so that you can avoid it. Many people are allergic to common foods like nuts, seafood, peanuts, wheat, eggs, soy and dairy products. Since many foods are made with these products, you will want to be extremely alert if you are eating out or dining at a friend’s house. Allergic reactions can be severe, so you will want to make sure to talk about your symptoms with a doctor, especially if you experience any breathing problems.

4. Sinus Infection

When you have a sinus infection, it causes your cheeks, eyes and the roof of your mouth to become swollen. You may experience other symptoms like mucus, a stuffy nose, fever, sore throat or a headache.

Treating a sinus infection is often done with over-the-counter products or nasal irrigation pots. You can also use eucalyptus in a shower and talk to your doctor about other treatment options.