What You Can Do
If you feel irritation or even just slight swelling near the site of your saliva glands – particularly when eating – it's a good idea to schedule an appointment with your doctor or dentist. Both can feel inside your mouth to see if a stone is causing the blockage. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggests they may use imaging as well, to take a closer look at what's going on.
Often the goal is to remove the stone that's blocking the duct, and this can be done in several ways. With luck you might be able to massage the stone out of place or stimulate enough saliva flow to wash it away. If not, your doctor might try to manually push the stone from the duct, or perform a minimally invasive surgical procedure known as a sialoendoscopy. Although removing the stone is a sufficient option for many patients, those who develop salivary gland stones frequently need to have their doctor remove the affected gland itself.
Incurring an infection thanks to the blockage isn't fun, but your doctor will most likely prescribe a course of antibiotics to clear it up. Massaging the area can help relieve swelling and pain associated with the infection. You might also consider using a special mouthwash, such as Colgate® Peroyxl® Mouth Sore Rinse, to minimize any discomfort you feel from the swollen gland. Rest assured most other pain relievers can help you feel better while getting treatment for this annoying condition.