Uvulitis is the medical term for the inflammation of the uvula (palatine uvula). In other words, if your uvula is swollen, you have uvulitis.
But what is the uvula? This organ is that fleshy part, which hands at the back of your throat. Even though it may look like something which is not so important, the uvula actually consists of glandular and muscle tissue, and saliva canals. This organ helps your throat to stay lubricated. According to some specialists, it may be possible for the uvula to play a role in speech. Others believe that our uvula is an organ designed to help you to swallow the food, or even to filter bacteria. However, when this gets swollen, it is clearly not pleasant or comfortable.
The most common cause of swollen uvula is an infection, whether a bacterial or viral one. For instance, if you suffer from mononucleosis – also referred to as the kissing disease – strep throat, or tonsillitis, your will experience inflammation in the throat. While your throat is swollen, your uvula can get swollen as well.
A more dangerous cause of uvulitis is the rare condition called epiglottitis. Generally affecting children, this illness can restrict breathing.
Allergic reactions to insect bites or food are other common causes of uvulitis. In the case of an anaphylactic reaction, your throat gets swollen extremely rapid, and emergency medical help is necessary.
The uvula can also be irritated by too much smoking, drinking, or exposure to chemicals, and therefore gets swollen.
This condition is also common after surgery, due to irritation caused by anesthesia or the trauma from the endotracheal tube.
Usually, when you have uvulitis, you can notice that your uvula is swollen, being bigger than normal. However, many people do not check their throat regularly, but you will surely see that swallowing becomes more and more difficult, or you have the feeling that something is stuck in your throat. In some cases, your voice may also sound different.
Other symptoms you may experience are:
- Sore throat
- Problems in breathing
- Excess saliva
Most of the natural remedies used for uvulitis are those that can heal inflammation. If you notice that an irritant is causing the disease, for instance, alcohol or smoking, it is recommended to drink less or quit smoking.
- Salt water
You won’t have to drink this liquid, but gargle it and then spit out. According to doctors, this will kill off bacteria and allergens, and will also loosen thick mucus from your throat.
- Garlic & Honey
It is needless to say that garlic and honey have antimicrobial proprieties. If you want to get rid of the inflammation of your uvula, crush a few garlic cloves and mix them with honey. This antibiotic solution will ease the inflammation and discomfort of your throat immediately.
- Turmeric & Ginger
Both of these spices have anti-inflammatory proprieties and are beneficial in the case of respiratory infections. A tea made of turmeric and ginger is an efficient remedy for uvulitis.
Important: If you suffer from severe uvulitis, see a doctor as soon as possible. In most cases, the symptoms are mild, and they can be treated at home, but when the disease is serious, you should seek medical help.