The uvula is a tissue, a small appendix located at the beginning of the throat between the tonsils. Very few know the function of this small tissue. It is mainly responsible for separating the nasal cavity from the oral cavity, then controlling the access of solid or liquid food to the nose. It can also act on speech, intervening in the articulation of some sounds to converse.
It also acts as a barrier against microorganisms and bacteria. The uvula or uvula can be affected by an inflammatory process; at that time, it modifies its typical conical characteristic into elongated, reddened, and painful. This FastlyHealarticle will talk about long uvula: causes, symptoms, treatment, and consequences.
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Enlarged uvula: causes
The uvula, or uvula, is a fleshy structure formed by three muscles (the tense and the levator palate, and the uvula muscle). This tissue is located at the end of the mouth, between the tonsils, and is responsible for fulfilling specific functions such as:
- Articulate sounds when speaking or conversing in sync with the throat and palate.
- Protective barrier against microorganisms or bacteria.
- Prevents the passage of food or liquids into the nose during vomiting.
The causes that can cause elongated uvula are many. Here are the main ones:
- Genetics: long uvula of congenital or hereditary origin, especially in conditions such as cleft lip or palatal fissure that condition the change in the uvula.
- Inflammatory process: that has caused its increase in size. This is related to viral and bacterial infections such as tonsillitis, pharyngitis, flu.
- Dehydration: due to the lack of water in the throat, it is forced to stay hydrated with saliva, causing inflammation and increased volume in the uvula. This is common in people who live in dry climates.
- Pollution: This is another cause associated with an elongated uvula. This generates an allergic effect; it is related apart from environmental pollution, tobacco smoke, or industrial plants.
Other causes that are associated with elongated uvula are:
- Gastroesophageal reflux.
- Runny nose
- Allergy to some foods.
- Citrus consumption.
- Alcohol consumption
What are the symptoms of an elongated uvula?
Any change in the standard size of the uvula can cause discomfort due to the place where it is located. Among the main symptoms of the elongated uvula, in addition to the enlargement of the uvula, we find:
- Inability to speak.
- Discomfort when eating or drinking.
- Modification in the tone of voice.
- Nauseous feeling due to elongated size.
- Difficulty swallowing.
- Desire to cough
- Trouble breathing
- Persistent sensation of something lodged in the throat.
- Obstructive sleep apnea.
Elongated uvula: treatment and consequences
Treatment in the presence of an elongated uvula will depend on the causes and consequences of the alteration in the expected size of the uvula generally, the long uvula brings with it discomforts such as the following:
- Snoring during rest hours.
- Obstructive sleep apnea.
- Daily shortness of breath.
- Pain that intensifies over time.
- Bleeding from rupture or trauma to the elongated uvula.
Thus, depending on the consequences of the elongated uvula, the use of one treatment or another will be required. The lines of action for the long uvula can be the following:
- Medications: pharmacological treatment will be used if the elongated uvula is associated with an infectious-inflammatory process. It will then require antibiotics, steroids, anti-inflammatories, and analgesics. Ibuprofen will be helpful for the uvula to return to its average size. It also helps to calm the pain that an elongated uvula can cause.
- Ice: chewing ice can reduce the size of the uvula in case it is elongated due to irritation. This is also ideal for relieving pain.
- Honey: 2 tablespoons a day of love is a perfect form as an oral antiseptic if the uvula is affected by a viral or bacterial infectious process.
- Surgical treatment: On the other hand, ultimately, surgical treatment will be suggested as the solution to the elongated uvula. This procedure is performed under topical anesthesia, which can bring changes in the voice, the passage of food to the nasal region, and some respiratory problems.
The presence of elongated uvula revolves around different causes that the doctor should study in detail to indicate the treatment that is necessary according to the causes and consequences of the change in the standard structure of the uvula.
Prevent elongation of uvula
Likewise, to prevent the uvula from changing size, we recommend that you follow some essential recommendations :
- Quitting smoking will avoid irritation of the uvula and, therefore, its change in size.
- Decreasing the consumption of alcoholic beverages will reduce the possibility that the uvula will lengthen.
- Avoid citrus fruits in excess.
- Hydrate yourself properly, at least eight glasses of water a day.
- Avoid very hot or freezing foods.
This article is merely informative. At FastlyHeal .com, we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor if you present any type of condition or discomfort.
If you want to read more articles similar to Elongated uvula: causes, symptoms, treatment, and consequences, we recommend entering our Ear, nose, and throat category.
I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.