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We continue our discussion of dental tori by expanding on the following: (Note: You may want to ‘refresh’ by reading the last blog, posted on August 6th, 2014.)
Causes of Tori:
1) Genetics: They are more prevalent in Asian and Eskimo populations.
2) Gender: More males than females have them.
3) Bruxism: But how? Bruxism can damage dental nerves. This causes the nerves to grow outwards instead of downwards which in turn stresses the teeth, gum and bone: this in turn causes these boney growths under the gums.
Dental Tori are not Cancer:
They are benign, non-cancerous tumors….just boney growths. They are nothing to worry about unless they affect your speech or you need to fit a denture in the mouth.
Signs of Oral Cancer:
1) Sudden, rapid growths on bone or soft tissue.
2) Soft growths that ‘squish’ when pushed.
3) Pain, swelling, or numbness of the jaw, cheek or tongue.
4) Discoloration I.e., Dark or black areas and some white spots on the tongue.
5) Bone cancer causes rapid bone growth and makes the bone spongy, soft and movable.
• Are slow growing, hard and cause no pain unless there is trauma inflicted upon them.
• These are often irritated by hard types of food I.e., taco chips.
• Large palatal tori (see image above) and lingual tori (see image from the last blog), need to be removed if they interfere with speech or the fitting of a denture.
Most tori do not interfere with eating or speech. Many people have tori, but do not even know. However, when they do notice them, they are worried that they have a cancerous tumor…..so if you are concerned about this, just keep in mind that they are just normal bone covered by normal soft tissue (gum)……and they do not turn into cancer.
If you are concerned about one of these ‘bumps’ in your mouth, it would be best to see your dentist to check it out….it may be just what you need to put your mind at ease!
Yours in dental health,
Dr. Robert Axelrad, Brampton Dentist