Submental lymph nodes are glands that are a part of the immune system and are located below the chin. Sub-mental lymph nodes consist of lymphatic tissues enclosed by a fibrous capsule. They contain scavenging white blood cells that fight infection and its spread. They act as filters that strain out potentially harmful pathogens and microorganisms from lymph fluid that drains from teeth and inside of the mouth. Swollen sub-mental lymph nodes are often a sign of disease or infection.

Sub-mental lymph nodes contain sinuses, germinal centers, trabeculae, scavenger cells, and reticular fibers. Conditions that can afflict the sub-mental lymph nodes include oral cancer, tooth abscess, infected wisdom tooth, lymphadenopathy, swollen lymph nodes, metastasis of cancer, leukemia, and lymphoma.

Submental lymph nodes are  located in the inner digastrics and serve the following regions:

  • The teeth
  • Some salivary glands (submental)
  • The lower lip
  • The Mouth floor
  • The tongue tip
  • The cheek skin

Functions

The submental lymph nodes drain all debris and waste substances from the teeth, the lower lip, the mouth floor and other regions of the oral cavity. These nodes work in groups in serving their drainage function. Their debris and waste substances flow through submandular lymph nodes and the deep cervical part in the cricoids cartilage.

Submental lymph cells are contained in capsule-like fibers. Some are located just beneath the skin while others lie deep in the body. Just like other lymph nodes, submental lymph nodes play an important role in the immune system. Their function is to filter lymph substances and defend the body against infection by pathogens.