Oh my – what are those bumps in my mouth?


Fear not – if you’ve noticed strange bumps either in the roof of your mouth or under your tongue, they’re probably tori.

A torus or tori (plural) is a benign growth of new bone that usually occurs in the mouth. In general they are slow growing and limited in size. Tori mostly develop on the palate (roof of the mouth) or on the inside (tongue side) of the lower jaw. Tori on the roof of the mouth (or palatal tori) are the most common, and a single growth is named “torus palatines.”

Ethnicity and sex tend to play a role in the development of these bony growths. According to some estimates, twenty to twenty-five percent of our population possess tori, and twice as many females get them as males. Also, Canadian/American Indians and Eskimos seem to more commonly develop tori than other ethnic groups.

Tori can form at different ages but more often begin at the onset of puberty or before thirty years of age. They can be of genetic nature (inherited) and can have occasional growth spurts and halts but generally don’t shrink. Size and shape of these varies and so does the thickness of the tissue that covers them.

If you have tori, there’s no need for removal unless they get too large or unless they’re interfering with the fabrication of dentures or any other prosthesis. Also removal may be indicated if the tori interfere with normal oral hygiene.

If you have questions about tori or think you may need a referral to an oral surgeon, we’d be happy to help.  Give us a call at Pine Mountain Dental Care of Kennesaw, and we’ll schedule an appointment.


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