Every so often a patient will present at our Calgary dentist office and be quite alarmed that they have discovered what appears to be a large growth or growths on their lower or upper jaw. Sometimes patients report that they have just discovered the lump, while others report that they have noticed that this lump has been growing. Sometimes, a patient will present at our Calgary dentist office with these lumps and not even be aware that they have them. Although all lumps, lesions and any new growths should always be checked by your Calgary dentist, the type of lump that we are describing here are called tori and are usually no cause for concern. Our Calgary dentist explains below.
WHAT ARE TORI?
Tori are single or multiple bony protrusions that form on your upper and/or lower jaw. When they appear on the lower jaw, they are known as mandibular tori. When these extra bone deposits form on your upper jaw or palate, they are referred to as torus palatinus. Tori can develop singularly or in multiples. They are most often seen bilaterally and can also be lobulated.
Fortunately, these extra bone deposits are completely benign and usually do not require any treatment. If you are advised by your Calgary dentist that you have one or more tori, if they are not bothering you, it will usually be recommended that they simply be monitored. However, if these bony protrusions interfere with your speaking and eating, our Calgary dentist may recommend that you consider surgery for their removal.
WHO WILL DEVELOP TORI?
Anybody can have these bony protrusions. There are several factors, however, that put some people more at risk for developing tori, including the following:
- your genetics – If your parents or siblings have tori, there is more of a chance that you will also develop them.
- if you grind or clench your teeth
- if you have missing or misaligned teeth
- if you have a cross bite or other bite (occlusion) issues
DO TORI CONTINUE TO GROW?
At some point, most tori reach a certain size and stop growing. Most often, the growth will stop some time in your late teenage years, after your jaw has fully developed. Some people, however, notice that growth continues well into their adult years.
DO TORI NEED TO BE REMOVED?
Often tori are discovered by your Calgary dentist and you are not even aware that you have them. Sometimes patients accidentally discover that they have tori when they run their tongue along their bottom or top jaw. Sometimes a patient will be told by their Calgary dentist or denturist that they have tori when they are preparing for dentures.
If you have tori on either your upper or lower jaw and they are not creating any issues, then there is no reason to remove the tori and they should simply be monitored by your Calgary dentist. Some reasons why surgical removal of tori by your Calgary dentist should be considered include the following circumstances:
- when tori interfere with the comfortable placement of a denture
- when tori interfere with the placement of braces
- when tori interfere with your oral care routine
- when the tori are becoming inflamed after eating or brushing your teeth
- when tori interfere with eating and drinking
- when tori impede your speech
- when food is getting trapped underneath tori or between multiple tori
HOW ARE TORI REMOVED BY MY CALGARY DENTIST?
The removal of tori is a surgical procedure that can be completed by your Calgary dentist or by an oral surgeon, if necessary. The procedure can be completed by your dentist in Calgary or oral surgeon under a local anaesthesia (numbing). If you are anxious about undergoing oral surgery and would prefer to be sedated, our Calgary dentist or an oral surgeon can perform the surgery with the use of oral or IV sedation.
HOW WILL I FEEL AFTER TORI SURGERY BY MY CALGARY DENTIST?
Most patients find tori removal surgery to be relatively tolerable and are able to return to their normal activities within a few of days to one week, except for eating, drinking and brushing their teeth which will require some additional gentleness and attention for six to eight weeks after surgery. After your surgery, you will likely be prescribed an antibiotic by Dr. Dirk Thompson, Calgary dentist. Most patients find that over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophens (such as Advil and Tylenol) are effective at relieving any post-surgery pain and discomfort. Generally, without any intervening complications, the excision from the tori removal surgery by your Calgary dentist will be fully healed within 6 to 8 weeks.
CAN TORI GROW BACK AFTER SURGERY?
Most often, tori will not grow back after tori removal by your Calgary dentist. Although tori can grow back after surgery, this would be quite rare and, if it does happen, may be related to a genetic disease. Often, if the tori do start to grow, the growth rate is very slow.
If you have any questions or concerns about your oral health, our dentist in Calgary would be pleased to see you at our newly renovated dental clinic in the beautiful community of Kensington / Sunnyside / Hillhurst in NW Calgary. Our Calgary dentist office is pleased to offer you early morning, evening and weekend appointments and we welcome new patients and patients of all ages. Whether you are looking for a dental cleaning, checkup, dental fillings, sedation dentistry, implant dentistry or cosmetic dentistry, our Calgary dentist is here for you. Call us today at 403.283.4252!
This blog post written by our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, D.D.S., is for informational purposes only. It is not to be taken or used as a substitute for dental, medical or other professional advice, treatment or diagnosis. Always ask your dentist, physician or other healthcare professional for advice before altering your diet or healthcare routine. Individual patient needs and oral healthcare concerns vary so please consult your dentist for more information about your specific dental health requirements.
Copyright 2021: Dirk A. Thompson Professional Corporation operating as Advance Your Health Dental. Dr. Dirk A. Thompson, D.D.S., is a general dentist in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.