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Why Do We Have a Uvula?

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  • It’s been suggested that your uvula prevents excessively nasal speech and helps with the formation of certain sounds
  • When you speak and swallow, your uvula swings back and forth and secretes large amounts of thin saliva; one purpose of your uvula may therefore be to help keep your throat moist
  • Touching your uvula will trigger your gag reflex, so your uvula may exist to help you expel any objects that are too large to swallow

By Dr. Mercola

Your uvula is the dangly bit of flesh that hangs at the back of your throat, a body part that has prompted many to wonder, “Why is that even there?” Fittingly, the word uvula comes from the Latin word “uvola,” which means “small bunch of grapes.”


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