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definition

The palate is the structure between the oral cavity and the nasal cavity. It forms both the roof for the oral cavity and the floor for the nasal cavity.

Palate disorders

Pain in the palate can have a variety of causes and take different forms. Accurate diagnosis in the event of Palate pain allows many conclusions to be drawn about more or less dangerous and acute causes.
It is helpful to know, for example, whether the pain is limited to the hard or soft palate or is diffuse everywhere and whether it begins more acutely or dull over a long period of time.

The nature of the pain can also tell a lot. For most people it happens every now and then burning pain in the roof of the mouth, roughly after consuming too hot dishes. In most cases, the particularly acute and rapid onset of pain is more harmless.

The diseases affecting the palate are very diverse. They range from more harmless complaints, such as:

  • Pimples
  • Red dots
  • Vesicles
  • Burns
  • abscess
  • swollen palate
  • inflamed palate

up to manifest diseases in the real sense:

  • Cleft lip and palate
  • Tonsillitis
  • Palate cancer
  • Glossopharyngeal neuralgia.

The complaints mentioned are explained below.

Pimples on the roof of the mouth

Pimples on the roof of the mouth can have various causes, but most of them are very harmless. Most of them are painless and disappear after a few days. The reason for this can be as in the face clogged gland, one allergicreaction or to hot or spicy food be.

The pimple knows one white covering on and is painful,is probably one Canker sores in front. If this occurs frequently, a doctor should be consulted.

Red spots on the palate

Red spots on the palate can have various causes, which can be very harmless, but can also have more serious reasons. Most of the time, these points appear with other physical symptoms that allow a diagnosis.

The simplest reason for redness is one Food intolerance with irritation of the mucous membrane. In addition, a infection with one Streptococcus Bacterium are available, which is indicative of Scarlet fever is. Other possible causes are infection with the HI virus or even that Epstein-Barr virus, the that Pfeiffer's glandular fever evokes. If the symptoms persist for a long time, a doctor should be consulted.

You can also read about this: Red spots on the roof of the mouth - how dangerous is it?

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Vesicles on the palate

Blisters on the roof of the mouth can have a variety of causes. Already one combustionor injury the mucous membrane through hot or spicy foods can cause. Infections with flu viruses, HIV viruses or herpes and various dental diseases can also be a reason for this.

Usually this is expressed in one Burn, Bad breath or increased salivation. Should blisters occur, particular attention should be paid to daily oral hygiene, as this is beneficial for wound healing and prevents further infections. Various home remedies such as ice cubes for cooling can help if pain occurs. If symptoms persist for a long time, a doctor should be consulted.

Read about it tooAphthae in the throat

Burned palate - what to do?

A burned palate is usually very harmless, but often very painful because the mucous membranes are very sensitive to pain. Hot foods are the most common reason for this.

At Burns there are different degrees of injury. In most cases it happens Redness and swelling. However, if the burn is more severe, it can Burn blisters and others Burn mark come, which can usually be very tasty on the front palate. In these cases, the palate usually heals by itself after a few days.

The easiest way to quickly relieve pain is to use the cooling This can be done either by sucking an ice cube or by eating an ice cream. However, care should be taken not to cool the affected area directly. It is also often helpful to consume cold buttermilk or cold yoghurt, as both are said to have anti-inflammatory, cooling and neutralizing effects on the alkaline saliva in the mouth. If none of these remedies are available, rinsing the mouth with cold water will of course also help.

In order to prevent further inflammation or to reduce inflammatory reactions, after the first pain has passed honey or chamomile be applied. The honey can be smeared directly onto the wound, because some of the ingredients have a beneficial effect on wound healing and prevent inflammation. The advantage of honey is that it is relatively sticky and can therefore stay on the wound for a long time. Just like honey, chamomile tea has antibacterial and wound healing effects. The advantage of chamomile tea is that you can gargle it as well as cool it. This relieves the pain that follows later and the effect occurs throughout the mouth. In addition to these measures, precautions can also be taken to minimize pain and the risk of inflammation.

One should refrain from using food sharp edges like eating chips or salty foods like french fries.

Find out more at:Burns on the roof of the mouth

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Abscess on the roof of the mouth

Abscesses on the roof of the mouth can be caused by bacteria, fungi, and blocked salivary glands. Especially in the area of ​​the palate, the occurrence of an abscess can also be related to the teeth. Abscesses make their way through a red, swollen, warm and usually extremely painful symptoms noticeable that the Ingestion considerable affect can.

Surrounding tissue such as muscles, nerves or bones can also be affected if the infection spreads. If left untreated, this can lead to life-threatening spread that ends in sepsis. The therapy usually consists in the Abscess splittingso that the Drain pus can and only in particularly severe forms with a tendency to spread, an additional antibiotic is prescribed.

Read more on the subject: Bump on the roof of the mouth

Swollen palate

The Swelling of the palate is one of the symptoms for a present inflammation. Since the mouth and palate are essential functions within the Chewing and swallowing process, but also with the Voice training Even slight changes in size, for example swelling, can cause limitations in everyday life.

Almost all of the aforementioned causes of pain and inflammation in the roof of the mouth can also trigger swelling. As part of any inflammation of the palate through Burns, injuries, allergic reactions, bacterial, viral and fungal attack, but also tumors swellings of varying degrees develop themselves.

It is noticeable, for example, with inflamed swollen tonsilscausing pain when swallowing. The swollen tonsils partially obstruct access to the esophagus and make every swallowing process painful.

Can also be dangerous allergic reaction be. These are either seasonal, for example through Pollen, or through Foods like nuts or fruits triggered. Depending on the extent of the allergic reaction, it can range from a scratchy throat with slight swelling to massive, painful swellings that radiate into the ear canals and Difficulty breathing and swallowing trigger, reach.

Depending on the cause, the swelling of the palate can be treated. If there are bacterial infections, the doctor can give one to two weeks Antibiotic therapies prescribe. In case of allergic reactions you can antiallergic drugs contribute to relief. In the case of burns and injuries, the body usually heals on its own. At best, it makes sense not to irritate the palate with hot, dry or spicy foods. In the case of burns, it can be useful to close the affected area cool, for example by sucking an ice cube.

If the swelling persists for many days, it is advisable to consult a doctor.

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Inflammation of the palate

The term inflammation is very unspecific and can take a variety of forms. Inflammation can be caused by the 5 main signs of inflammation determine: pain ("Dolor"), Warming ("Calor"), Redness ("Rubor"), Swelling ("tumor") And restricted function ("Functio laesa“).

The most common form is combustion, often from food that is too hot. Small injuries to the mucous membrane can also be the cause. In young people, this is often done by cutting braces.

If there is a wound in the oral mucosa, a path is in principle paved through which Foreign pathogens penetrate the tissue and cause inflammation. In most cases these are bacteria, but viruses and fungi can also cause inflammation of the palate.

More information is available here: Inflammation on the roof of the mouth

Especially those Almondsare prone to droplet infections. In addition to the reddening and swelling of the tonsils, it is also common fever, Sore throat and exhaustion. If bacteria are the cause of the inflammation, yellowish to white pus often forms, which can be seen from the outside and which is highly contagious.

Read more on this topic at:Symptoms of tonsillitis.

Simply viral (caused by viruses) infections usually heal within a week in otherwise healthy people. If there is a long-term bacterial infection and typical pus can be seen on the tonsils, a family doctor should definitely be consulted. Often times it becomes necessary with one one to two week antibiotic therapye to start. If the infection becomes chronic or occurs too frequently, this can be an indication that the Surgically remove the tonsils allow. This usually requires a one-week hospital stay.

Read more on this topic at:Remove the almonds

To prevent inflammation of the palate is one good oral hygiene We recommend. Regular, thorough brushing of your teeth and mouth rinsing solutions can provide good prophylaxis against harmful bacteria in the oral mucosa.

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Scratching pain on the roof of the mouth

Scratchy pains are especially common allergic reactionson. Most often these are through Pollen or incompatible foods triggered. Many people already find the consumption of kiwi or pineapple uncomfortable, as the palate appears reddened and itches afterwards.

Allergy medications are widespread and widely available and can be very useful for known allergies.

Read more on this topic at:Therapy for an allergy.

Cleft lip and palate

During development, the palate is created by the merging of the two upper jaw systems (Median palatine suture) and the incisive bone. This Clasp can however incomplete and it comes to congenital malformations. This can be a Cleft palate (Palatoschisis), one Uvula cleavage (Uvula bifida) or even one Cleft lip and palate (Cheilognathopalatoschisis) be. Earlier names were also wolf's throat for the cleft palate and harelip for the cleft lip and palate. However, these terms are now obsolete.

A cleft lip and palate occurs more often than the isolated forms of the palate or lip cleft.

A cleft palate can affect both the hard and soft palates. Swallowing and thus eating and speaking (articulation of some sounds) are impaired. A cleft palate also increases the risk of some infections (due to the lack of closure between the individual cavities in the head). These include, for example, middle ear infections or respiratory infections (of the nasal, paranasal sinuses or throat).

Infants in particular can no longer be breastfed because the Lost suction effect goes. This can be temporarily supplied by the dentist with a plastic palate plate.

In the case of a cleft lip and palate, the split is even more pronounced and also affects the upper jaw and lip.

Under one Uvula bifida one understands the cleavage of the uvula. It can therefore be counted as the easiest form of the cleft palate.

For the therapy of the cleft palate is one surgery necessary. In this operation, the Cleavage corrected and closed.

causes for such a malformation are genetic changes. Factors in the S.pregnancy such as smoking, drug and alcohol use by the mother or a Nutritional deficiency and ionizing rays discussed as the cause of these genetic defects.

Read more on this topic at:Cleft lip and palate.

It can also be used for Stunted growth of hard palate come if, for example, the growth stimulus does not come from swallowing properly. Then there is not enough space in the upper jaw for the permanent teeth and constrictions, nesting and jaw misalignments occur.

This problem is treated by the so-calledPalatal expansion.

Tonsillitis

A Tonsillitis is an infectious disease that is often caused by viruses and less often by bacteria. Many of these bacteria belong to the normal pharyngeal flora, but they can be immunodeficiency or superficial injuries cause the disease.

It expresses itself through a swelling and Redness one or both tonsils, one purulent coating, difficulty swallowing and swelling of the lymph nodes on the neck and lower jaw. In addition, accompanying symptoms are common Fever, headache and a generalized fatigue in front.

If there is a bacterial tonsil inflammation Spread of the pathogens through the blood, even exists risk of death. This can lead to sepsis, inflammation of the heart and other organs. For this reason, if you suspect tonsillitis, a doctor should be consulted.

The infection can be divided into an acute and a chronic variant according to the course of the disease. Therapy is based on this. In the case of acute tonsillitis, emphasis is placed on combating pathogens and relieving pain. In the case of a chronic course, the tonsils can also be surgically removed.

You might also be interested in: This is how to treat tonsillitis

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Palate cancer

Palate cancer is a malignant and common oral disease. This type of cancer is more than twice as common in men than in women. This usually happens in the fifth decade of life. This is where the tumors usually develop from the cells of the mucous membrane. The average survival rate is around 50%. However, the individual prognosis strongly depends on which one stage the cancer is detected, which is why early detection is essential.Because of this you should wounds that are difficult to heal and Surface changes controlled at an early stage become.

Other signs of palate cancer can be Hoarseness, bad breath, dry cough and sore throat that are often misinterpreted. Various factors can cause cancer to develop. These include a significant proportion Smoke and the regular Alcohol consumption, lack Oral hygiene and the human papillomavirus. This virus is usually transmitted through skin or mucous membrane contact. This can be done with sex as well as sharing towels and toothbrushes.

Also, some people have a genetic predisposition for it on. Palate cancer is treated either by a, depending on the stage surgical removal and a following radiotherapy or by a combination of both with one chemotherapy.

Glosspharyngeal neuralgia

A painful but rather rare disease is the "Glosspharyngeal Neuralgia" represents. This describes a excessive sensitivity of the cranial nervewhich for the Touch and taste perception in the oral cavity area responsible is. Even light touches can lead to sharp, stabbing pain in severe cases.

Functions of the palate

The front part of the palate, the hard palate, separates especially the Oral from the nasal cavity from each other. Due to the resistance offered by its hard structure, the hard palate serves as an abutment against the tongue and thus supports the Swallowing processby pressing the tongue upwards when swallowing, for example, so that food can slide further back into the oral cavity or towards the throat.

The soft palate is flexible due to its structure and the muscles it contains. It separates the oral cavity from the nasopharynx and the adjacent nasal cavity. The pharynx opens directly behind the soft palate, from which it descends in the direction esophagus (Esophagus) and Larynx (larynx) With windpipe (Trachea) goes.
When swallowing, the task of the soft palate with the soft palate is that Prevent liquids or chyme from entering the nasal cavity. To do this, the soft palate is pulled by a muscle when you swallow (Pharyngis constrictor muscle) pressed against the back wall of the throat. This is the nasal cavity from the Oral cavity locked.

The soft palate has another function in the Sound formation (articulation) So speaking.

Depending on whether the language is more oral (i.e. via the oral cavity) or more nasal (the sounds are pronounced through the nose), the soft palate can direct the escaping airflow. Oral sounds separate the nasal cavity from the oral cavity (like swallowing). This is how the air coming out of the lungs goes (Phonation stream) through the throat and oral cavity. With nasal sounds, such as some consonants, the soft palate closes the oral cavity at the rear edge and the air flowing out and making sounds flows through the nasal cavity.

Orthodontics on the palate

What is a palatal expansion?

A palatal expansion is used Widening of the upper jaw including the palate in a lateral direction. An indication for this is a disproportion in the lateral size of the lower and upper jaw. When choosing the method, attention is paid to the age of the patient.

At Children physiologically there is one Growth plate between the two halves of the palate, which can be expanded using removable braces or fixed appliances. Since the braces interfere with speaking and are less successful in therapy, the fixed appliances are usually used, which can be readjusted by the patient himself or a person close to him, so that a hinge is rotated further every few days and the brace becomes wider .

At Adult a growth plate no longer exists, which is why a maxillofacial surgery becomes necessary. The aim of this is to weaken the seam between the two halves of the jaw. Usually parallel to this, the bone above the teeth of the upper jaw is weakened. These two procedures allow for a palatal expansion in adults.

Because with an expansion of the palate a lot of movement and high pressures or tensions occur in the mouth area Pain normal especially at the beginning of therapy. In addition, after a few days, a tooth gap appears in the area of ​​the upper incisors, but this is a positive sign. It means the enlargement is effective. During the entire treatment time should be good Oral hygiene be respected. Likewise, should be regular Control appointments must be adhered to, as the brackets of the appliance often loosen and damage to the tooth or gums can be avoided at an early stage.

After completing the expansion, the appliance should remain in the mouth for about six more weeks, since bone will form during this time and the upper jaw will be stabilized in the new position. A palatal expansion is also helpful with Cross bites and Breathing problemssince the Palate is expanded as the bottom of the nasal cavity and thus more volume flow comes about. This is what one tries nowadays at Allergy sufferers and snoring people to reach.

You will find more information on this topic here: The palatal expansion

What is a palatal brace?

A wire bracket is called a palatal brace, which runs across the palate between the large molars on both sides and is fixed to them. The aim a palatal brace is the stronger anchorage of the molars in the upper jaw and the Reduce snoring.

A stronger anchoring is achieved in that the tongue with everyone Swallowing process against the wire bracket between the molars pressed becomes. Due to the mechanical coupling to the teeth, these are also pressed deeper into the upper jaw with each swallowing process. Snoring is avoided by the fact that the wire bow between the molars represents a mechanical barrier that prevents the soft palate or uvula from closing the upper respiratory tract.

The advantage over a Protrusion splint or. Snoring splint lies in the fact that there is no need for complete dentition, the palatal brace does not cause temporomandibular joint pain or damage and only borders the mucous membrane of the oral cavity, which is not damaged by it.

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Anatomical structures around the palate

A distinction is made between the following structures anatomically:

  • the hard and the soft palate
  • the soft palate
  • the tonsils
  • the uvula
  • the palatal arch
  • Palate muscles

The hard and soft palate

The palate is part of the upper jawbone (maxilla) and is divided into two sections. The hard palate (Palatum durum) and the soft palate (Palatum molle).

The front part of the palate is the hard palate. It consists of the following bony structures: the Intermaxillary bone(Os incisivum) and the Palatine bone (Palatine bone). In the area of ​​the hard palate, the bone is firmly fused with the mucous membrane lying on it and cannot be moved against it. The mucous membrane of the hard palate goes directly into the sides Gums (Gingiva) above. The hard palate extends approximately to the level of the third molar teeth (3rd molar). From here on, the hard palate changes directly into the soft palate.

The soft palate is the back of the palate. He is agile. They belong to the soft palate Soft palate (Velum palatinum) and the Uvula (uvula). The soft palate consists of a connective tissue plate into which three muscles also radiate. These muscles are the Tensor veli palatini muscle (Soft palate tensioner), the Levator veli palatini muscle (Soft palate lifter) and the Palatopharyngeal muscle (forms the palatal arch).

The soft palate

The soft palate, too soft palate called, forms with the hard palate the delimitation of the oral cavity to the nasal cavity and delimits the oral cavity towards the back of the throat. The transition between the hard palate and the soft palate becomes Ah line called because it becomes visible when speaking the vowel "A". The soft palate consists largely of muscles, connective tissue and mucous membranes, whereby the muscles are of great importance for the swallowing process. Here, the soft palate is pressed against the back wall of the throat by contraction of the muscles and closes the upper airways.

Thus it represents an important one Barrier between the air and food routes In addition, the soft palate is raised and lowered in the Language education involved. In addition, the soft palate also contains smaller glands that work together with other glands Produce saliva. On the side of the soft palate arise two double folds that form the so-called palatal arches.

The palatine tonsil

The palatine tonsil is a paired organ that is located between the anterior and posterior palatal arches. They are therefore at the transition between mouth and throat and belong to it lymphatic ring of the pharynx at. As a lymphatic organ, it serves immune system and thus the defense against pathogens. It is usually the size of an almond, but it is enlarged with inflammation. Like the entire oral cavity, it is covered by a mucous membrane, which extends into the deep indentations of the surface the palatine tonsil reaches into it. Food particles colonized by bacteria can collect in these folds. White blood cells are also often found here. The contact between the environment and the body's immune system has an important effect on the functioning of the immune system.

The food particles that collect in the folds on the surface of the tonsils are excreted at regular intervals. This so-called Detritus or Tonsil stone is often mistakenly perceived as tonsillitis by laypeople. However, this does not have to be a sign of inflammation, but is perfectly normal without any other symptoms.

The uvula

The Uvula, also uvula or also called uvula, is a soft tissue process of the soft palate and is located in the middle on the free side of it. This allows it to move around and is like the soft palate on the Language education involved. The shape is formed by a muscle that is covered by a mucous membrane. They are also located in the mucous membrane touch-sensitive receptors, the the Nausea can trigger. These receptors are used to detect foreign bodies and adjust Protective mechanism against swallowing objects represent.

Read more underUvula

The palatal arch

The palatal arches are formed by two folds of the mucous membrane, both of which arise from the soft palate. The posterior arch of the palate extends from there to the pharynx, while the anterior arch of the palate ends at the base of the tongue. The palatine tonsil is located between these two folds of the mucous membrane. You are also at the Language education, Swallowing process and on Nausea involved.

Read more about this under: Palatine arch

Palate muscles and soft structures

The Soft palate tensioner (Tensor veli palatini muscle) tightens the soft palate and can lower it. This muscle is also responsible for the fact that the Eustachian tube (Tuba auditiva) opens. The soft palate lifter (Levator veli palatini muscle) can lift the soft palate. The Palatopharyngeal muscle forms the palatal arch and supports the throat muscles when swallowing.

The soft palate, which makes up the soft palate, is one Soft tissue fold. This consists of the muscles, connective tissue and mucous membrane. At the posterior end of the soft palate, this describes a double arch. In the middle of this arch hangs the uvula (Uvula). This is visible when the mouth is wide open.

At the rear end of the soft palate there is a narrow throat or throat (Isthmus faucium). This forms the transition from the oral cavity to the pharynx. The gullet is formed by the base of the tongue and the soft palate including the uvula.

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Quality assurance by: Dr. Nicolas Gumpert | Last change: 10.04.2021