Q. Is it normal to feel lymph nodes under the jaw or neck?

Answered by
Dr. Muhammad Zubayer Alam
and medically reviewed by Dr. K Shobana
This is a premium question & answer published on Jul 25, 2021 and last reviewed on: Aug 14, 2021

Hi doctor,

Is it normal to feel lymph nodes under the jaw or neck? They are tiny without pain. They move well and I can feel them.



Welcome to

Thank you for the query. I can understand your concern. According to your statement, you can feel your lymph nodes under the jaw or neck and you want to know whether it is normal. Lymph nodes are situated in various areas of the body but people can usually feel lymph nodes close to the skin surface like jaw and neck. Swollen lymph nodes of the neck or jaw are usually not a matter of concern.

They usually result from any type of infection or a typical response of the immune system. Swollen lymph nodes of the jaw or neck can remain soft or flexible and nontender in nature. Swollen lymph nodes of that particular area can result from viral or bacterial infections such as common cold, allergies, flu, sinus tract infections or sinusitis, ear infections, teeth infections, strep throat, nasal infections, measles or chickenpox, infectious mononucleosis, and many more.

Common imaging tests like CT (computed tomography) scan, MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), ultrasound, or X-ray can be used to check lymph nodes. Biopsy of lymphnode can confirm its underlying etiology and treatment guidelines. Treatment depends on the cause. If swollen lymphnode of the neck or jaw results from any type of bacterial infection, then antibiotics are the treatment of choice.

Usually, swollen lymphnode of the neck or jaw can be caused due to some common health conditions like cold or flu, teeth abscess, measles or chickenpox, tonsillitis, mumps, skin or soft tissue infections, ear infections and these swollen lymph nodes can go away on their own over time without any medical treatment. So, do not be worried. Take care. In case of any other query, kindly ask me.

Thank you doctor,

Can I feel them even if they are not swollen?



Welcome back to

Thank you for the query. If the lymphnode does not remain enlarged, then it cannot be felt. But, if you had an infection like a common cold, allergies, or tonsillitis previously, then you may have a feeling of lymph nodes becoming swollen. Again, lymph nodes are usually too small to feel except in slim people where they can feel lymph nodes in the groin, neck, or sometimes in the jaw as small-sized lumps. If you are very slim and found a pea-sized or bean-sized lymphnode in the groin, neck, or even jaw, then this is normal, because normal lymph nodes are usually smaller than half-inch or twelve millimeters. Take care. Hope I have answered your question. Let me know if I can assist you further.

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