With betta fish being such a popular species of fish to keep within the fish keeping community while also being a relatively sensitive fish, we commonly see people reaching out with a number of different questions about what they should be doing to care for their pet betta fish.
One question that we have noticed more and more people asking over the last couple of weeks is about a betta cyst with many people worrying about the cyst and wondering what they should do.
Although some betta cysts can be serious and potentially cancerous, many betta cysts are not a serious problem and although unsightly, your fish should be fine.
Still, we wanted to publish this article to try and help as many of our readers as possible get a better idea about what to expect if their betta has a cyst.
Due to not being able to see your betta fish, we are only able to offer you generic advice in this article and if you want specific advice you will have to seek assistance from a veterinarian or an experienced fish keeper in your local area to help identify what the cyst actually is.
Are Betta Cysts Common?
Betta cysts are not overly common but they are certainly not rare either with many bettas developing a cyst at some point during their lifetime.
The most common type of betta cyst that you will see is known as an “eye cyst” which is where the betta fish’s eye becomes slightly swollen.
In most cases, these cysts are not a serious problem and will eventually go away on their own without any treatment being required.
What Do Betta Cysts Look Like?
The appearance of a betta cyst will depend on the location of the cyst and the type of cyst that your fish has.
As we mentioned above, the most common type of betta cyst is an “eye cyst” which will cause your fish’s eye to become slightly swollen.
These types of cysts are usually not a serious problem and will eventually go away on their own without any treatment being required.
Other types of betta cysts can be much more serious and can cause your fish a great deal of pain.
For example, a “mouth cyst” is where a cyst forms around the betta fish’s mouth and can make it very difficult for your fish to eat.
These types of cysts need to be treated as soon as possible by a veterinarian as they can quickly become life-threatening.
Fin and tail cysts are less common in bettas with there usually being a fifty-fifty split with the risk of a fin or tail cyst being potentially fatal or not.
Most internal cysts can look like your betta fish is just bloated rather than it actually having a cyst so keep this in mind if you notice that your betta is bloated but you can’t work out why.
What Causes Betta Cysts?
There are many different things that can cause betta cysts with the most common being an infection or a reaction to a foreign object such as a piece of gravel or a rock.
Other potential causes of betta cysts include:
- Hormonal imbalances.
- Poor diet.
As you can see, there are many different things that can cause betta cysts with some being more serious than others.
How Do You Remove A Betta Cyst From Your Fish?
The only way to remove a betta cyst from your fish is by surgically removing it which is something that you will need to take your fish to a veterinarian to have done.
In many cases, the veterinarian will also prescribe your fish with a course of antibiotics to help clear up any infection that may be present and causing the cyst removing the need for surgery but this is rare and the type of cyst will come into play.
We know that there are a number of videos on social media showing you ways to manually remove your betta’s cyst yourself but we would never recommend this, it is very easy to make mistakes when trying to remove a betta cyst yourself causing serious issues with your betta.
How To Prevent Betta Cysts!
The best way to prevent betta cysts is by ensuring that your fish has a clean and safe environment to live in.
This means making sure that their tank is the correct size, has plenty of hiding places and that you are regularly changing their water.
It is also important to feed your fish a high quality diet as a poor diet can lead to a number of health problems including betta cysts.
If you have any concerns about your fish’s health then we would always recommend seeking professional advice from a veterinarian who specializes in fish.
This is a preventative measure that will help you to avoid any potential problems with your fish in the future.
What Will Happen If I Leave The Cyst On My Betta?
In most cases, the cyst will eventually go away on its own without any treatment being required.
However, there are some types of cysts that can be much more serious and if left untreated can quickly become life-threatening.
As we touched on earlier in the article, some of these cysts can actually be cancer tumors on your betta fish and it is very difficult for a beginner to be able to tell exactly what the cyst is.
Some benign cysts on your betta will stay on the fish indefinitely with some growing as time goes on but not actually killing your betta or causing it any really problems with its quality of life.
If you do have this type of cyst on your betta fish then it can be common for a vet to just recommend that you leave the cyst on your betta as it is due to the risk of removing it not being worth it.